The Cuban government digged out the remains of two historic figures to reinter them near Fidel Castro’s remains Tuesday in Santiago de Cuba.
Carlos Manuel de Céspedes del Castillo started the first of the three liberation wars fought against Spain. He served as the first President of the Republic of Cuba in Arms, and Spanish troops killed him in 1874. He later became known as the “Father of Cuba.”
Mariana Grajales Coello is a Cuban War of Independence hero. She improvised a hospital in a mountain settlement in Santiago de Cuba. She died in Jamaica in 1893.
“It is easy to be heroes with women such as these,” José Martí wrote after watching her in action on the field.
The Cuban government showed the new tombs for Grajales and Céspedes at the Santa Ifigenia Cemetery Tuesday on state TV. Raul Castro also attended the ceremony at the historic cemetery in Santiago de Cuba.
Independent media 14 y Medio reported the transfer of the remains was kept secret for months, was headed by the same officials in charge of finding and moving the remains of Ernesto “Che” Guevara and did not notify their relatives.
Even though Grajales and Céspedes were both life-long Catholics, the church was also not involved.