Antonio María Gordon's The Flight of the Mango Flowers is a fascinating autobiography set in a period of historical importance, whose relevance has recently resurfaced. In light of the current day controversy with regard to the United States accepting Syrian refugees, the author provides his story of a different time, when thousands of Cuban children left their families and their homeland for various countries, including the U.S., to escape the Castro regime and the Communist takeover of their island.
During this Cuban crisis, the Catholic Church and the U.S. government worked together on several projects - the Pedro Pan Program and the Unaccompanied Cuban Children Program - where parents sent their children away to save them from the treachery of the times. To quote the author, "I arrived in the United States alone during Operation Pedro Pan, becoming one of the thousands of unaccompanied children in the care of the Church. This memoir has been in the making for more than fifty years. It began the first time I read and stored the more than 300 letters I received during my first two years in exile. These letters have allowed me to tell the story at this time."
About the Author
Antonio María Gordon was born in Havana, Cuba. He came to the U.S. and attended Bishop Kenny High School in Jacksonville, Florida, and then received a B.S. degree from John Carroll University, a Master's at University of Miami, a PhD. from Florida State, and then graduated from Emory University School of Medicine and specialized in Internal Medicine at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami. After a stint in the U.S. Navy Reserve, he held several other positions in medicine and is now medical director at University Health Care in Hialeah, Florida.