Our journey together will take us to Spain, Cuba, Mexico and America. Pipo was born in Spain in a small village called Valle De Las Casas in the Castilian Province near Leon, about one hundred and twenty miles North West of the capital city of Madrid. I will cover his life from his birth to his arrival in Cuba, where I was born, and begin to share my first memories of Pipo growing up during the Revolution of Fidel Castro in 1959, as well as during the Missile Crisis of 1962, leading up to our family's departure for Mexico and arrival in Mexico City. I will share the transforming experiences that would shape my future relationship with Pipo. In Mexico City, I convey the turning point that occurred on the concourse of the Mexico City International Airport, an event that I have labeled the Chiclet's incident. From this point on, I was on a secret personal mission to help Pipo ecomically and in every other way I could possibly imagine once we eventually arrived in America. Only a few months after the riots of 1967 literally tore the city apart, we settled in Newark, New Jersey. The riots left behind a flight path of ecomic turbulence for many decades; nevertheless, Newark became my home. It became dear to me ever since our maiden voyage. My mother Maria urged me to look down from our plane so I could see all the bright lights shining below us. Then she uttered these heartfelt words, Miguel this is our new home -- just as we began to rapidly turn and descend in the dark sky for our landing at the old Newark North Terminal Airport. Once we disembarked, Pipo was waiting to accompany us to the reunification celebration.
Mike Garcia is currently employed at Princeton University in Printing & Mailing.He also worked in the Frist Campus Center, where he began as an operations assistant in 2002. He is also working at United/Continental Airlines in Newark Liberty International Airport in airport operations since 1999. He was born in Camaguey, Cuba, on March 1, 1959. He left Cuba in 1967 through Mexico with his parents and immigrated to America, settling in Newark, New Jersey, in 1968. After many years living away, in 2004 he came back to his beloved city of Newark, where he grew up. He attended Middlesex Community College in Edison, New Jersey, and received his bachelor's degree from Thomas Edison State College in the liberal arts field. He has spent countless hours volunteering his time, service, and, more importantly, showing his compassion, especially with new immigrants who lack basic knowledge of US immigration laws. He also stresses the importance of furthering their education in order to achieve the American dream of upper mobility more quickly in their newly adopted homeland, so they can live much richer lives. He enjoys bike riding and taking long walks. In addition, he is a huge fan of the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers football team and of high school sports. His favorite pro sports teams are the Pittsburgh Steelers, New York Mets, New York Knicks, New York Islanders, and F.C. Real Madrid. One of his hobbies is visiting old castles, universities, monasteries, museums and churches. He is also an avid reader of philosophy, psychology, political science, theology, history and going to the movies. Above all, he loves the simplicities and purities of life best.