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Event Description

Between December 1960 and October 1962, Operation Pedro Pan brought 14,048 unaccompanied Cuban children to the United States. Many Cuban parents, afraid that Fidel Castro's government would take away their parental authority, exercised the right to choose how their children would be educated, by sending them abroad. Approximately half the minors were reunited with relatives or friends at the Miami airport. Others were cared for by the Catholic Welfare Bureau, directed by a young Irish priest, Bryan 0. Walsh. Many of the children were placed in temporary shelters in Miami and relocated to 200 cities across 48 states and U.S. territories. Most were eventually reunited with their parents. Directed and produced by Carlos Gutierrez. Operation Pedro Pan: The Cuban Children's Exodus is a documentary film illustrating the story of the largest recorded child refugee exodus in the Western Hemisphere. A production of Operation Pedro Pan Group, lnc.'s Historic Committee, this documentary, which runs for 90 minutes, is based on research undertaken by the Historic Committee. The film consists of 22 interviews with former Pedro Pans, Pedro Pan mothers, caretakers, and historians, which cover life in Cuba before 1959, the drastic changes brought about by the Revolution, the unaccompanied children's exodus from the Island, and their arrival and adaptation to life in the U.S. The documentary concludes with the inspiring reflections of the lives of these Cubans nearly 55 years later.



Document Type


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Cuban Research Institute


Arts and Humanities

Operation Pedro Pan: The Cuban Children's Exodus [Film Screening]



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