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Legendary Cuban Farmer Alejandro Robaina Dies

James Suckling
Posted: April 19, 2010

(continued from page 2)

I asked his grandson a few years ago what his grandfather had taught him as a tobacco grower, and Hiroshi almost went into tears.

"Truth is that it has been easier for me than for my grandfather," Hiroshi said. "He acquired his experience from his father and grandfather and from his own work throughout his life. For me, I feel it has been a lot easier because he has passed on to me the essence of all those years of experience. I have not had to experience the hardship he went through in his life."

He added that family traditions in the countryside have been mostly lost in Cuba, but that they were always working hard to stay together as a family. "It those traditions in life that keep us all going." he said.

Robaina is survived by his son Carlos, 54, and his grandson Hiroshi, 33, and three great-grandchildren

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Comments   1 comment(s)

Joy Robaina Campbell — Portland, Ore.,  —  November 28, 2010 1:21am ET

James Suckling:

Thank you so very much for sharing your experiences with Alejandro Robaina. I happened upon your article in Cigar Aficionado recently, while perusing the magazine at a friend's house. I came to your blog, read more, and got chills up my spine and tears in my eyes.

My grandparents, Ramon and Dulce Robaina, came from Havana to the US to escape Batista. My mother (deceased), was born in Havana in 1924. My grandfather Robaina died approximately fifty years ago, and he was the youngest of 15 children. It occurs to me that one of my grandfather's older siblings could have had a son, and that son could be Alejandro Robaina. Maybe a long shot but maybe not. In any case, the family resemblance is striking and whether I'm imagining things or not, I am so proud of my Cuban side of my family. They were always the most gentle and gracious people I have ever known. I have been fascinated by your articles and can't thank you enough.

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