“We are one of your youngest children,” said Dr. Ericka Gaitán, who was in the first group of physicians who graduated in 2005 from the Havana-based School of Medicine, founded after Hurricane Mitch devastated Central America.
Regarding the seventh anniversary of the physical absence of the Commander-in-Chief, the 25 years of the Cuban medical brigade in Guatemala and the 24 years of the ELAM, the young doctor shared with Cuban friends here how she met Fidel.
I don’t really have close anecdotes, but his personality came to me through Marta, who was the lady in charge of cleaning the room at the School and she took me to the Caimito municipality, in Artemisa, to meet her family, she said.
I met Fidel through a former combatant of the founders of ELAM and I went with him to Alamar, in the Cuban capital, where I learned for the first time what a Committee for the Defense of the Revolution was, Gaitán added.
His figure always came to us in the long talks we had in coordination with Rector Juan Domingo Carrizo and other personalities, from whom we had a lot of that human part of the people that the Commander had. I also met him through my brigade colleagues, when I left ELAM and went to live for two years in the Covadonga Hospital, since I am at heart from the Calixto García Hospital in Havana, where I lived for four years, she described.
In the open stands we heard his presence, we even had to listen to him in the rain standing there speaking loudly, and as well as every May 1, she added.
I also met him when we went to collect potatoes in volunteer work, through the cooks, the support personnel, the teachers, I think they all had something from Fidel, she commented.
He graduated us directly from ELAM and I can affirm that we continue to be Fidel, the more than 1,000 graduates from this nation make revolution from their work, where they are in solidarity with the people who need it, Gaitán remarked.
Gilder Tirao, who graduated from that school in 2014, said it was complex and a responsibility to be able to talk about the Commander, but one of the great lessons that he bequeathed to us is the brigade that celebrates 25 years here with us, he stressed.
They don’t make noise, like a bomb, they remain in every corner and represent Fidel, he said. Whatever it is, whoever and wherever we are, we always feel the same charisma, he added.
We carry with us what he taught us, we never forget the experiences we brought from Cuba, we are very grateful for that great idea that Fidel had, Tirao emphasized.
He changed the lives of us and thousands of Guatemalans, said Tirao, who mentioned other values learned with an impact on the most dispossessed classes of this Central American territory.
What Fidel achieved is great, because time has passed and love does not change, the young professional doctor in a white coat stressed.