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Out of the Humidor

CA Readers
From the Print Edition:
Cuban Spy Scandal, May/Jun 02

(continued from page 1)

Mark DeFazio
Lieutenant, NYPD
New York, New York

Dear Marvin,
How often do you have the chance to have a 104-year-old man kiss your hand? Not very often, but only a few weeks ago I had the privilege of being graciously greeted by Cuba's most celebrated fisherman while traveling and taking photographs in Cuba. I was saddened to read of his passing only days after I had met him. Once a handsome, dashing and daring man, Gregorio Fuentes welcomed me into his home in his quaint fishing village, Cojimar—made famous by Ernest Hemingway's Old Man and the Sea.

Although stricken with cancer and tending an inflamed neck, frail with thin bones from old age, he still managed to enjoy visitors and consented to my photographing him in his living room. Sitting in his wheelchair sporting his signature hat, tended by his loving grandson and translator, Rafael, he bantered with me about his life.

His spunk and sense of humor and especially that sparkle in his eyes became evident when asked about the secret of his longevity. "Cigars, rum and women," he responded as he held my hand to kiss it once again.

Beverley Abramson
Toronto, Canada

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