Ho­me­co­ming tri­bu­te

HO­MA­GE TO AD­MI­RAL PAS­CUAL CER­VE­RA AND TO­PE­TE IN MEDINA SIDONIA, HIS HOMETOWN

Excelencias Turísticas del caribe y las Américas - - 120 Years Later -

Medina Sidonia is a city in the pro­vin­ce of Ca­diz, be­lon­ging to the re­gion of La Jan­da. The city is pro­bably bet­ter known for the Fin­ca La Can­to­ra –ow­ned by fa­mous folk sin­ger Isa­bel Pan­to­ja- than for being the birth­pla­ce of Ad­mi­ral Pas­cual Cer­ve­ra and To­pe­te. What's mo­re, I ha­ve no doubts about that.

Pas­cual Cer­ve­ra and the sai­lors of his squa­dron, he­roes of that 19th cen­tury con­flict, so for­got­ten and lost in the night of ti­mes, which is the war of Cu­ba, ha­ve re­cei­ved a heart­felt ho­ma­ge by their country­men in this town of Ca­diz, wit­hin the fra­me­work of the Whi­te Nights, an event that al­so fea­tu­red an ex­hi­bi­tion of un­der­wa­ter pain­ting and pho­to­graphy that de­pic­ted the work of Spa­nish un­der­wa­ter pain­ter Alfonso Cruz, to­get­her with the art of Cu­ban fi­ne ar­tist Rey­nal­do Vi­lla­mil and Cu­ban pho­to­grap­her Je­sús Vicente Gon­zá­lez Díaz.

The ma­yor of Medina Sidonia and the Ad­mi­ral's great­grand­son, Pas­cual Cer­ve­ra de la Chi­ca, pre­si­ded over the ce­re­mony. Li­ke­wi­se, anot­her great-grand­son of the Ad­mi­ral's at­ten­ding the pre­sen­ta­tion, Án­gel Luis Cer­ve­ra Fan­to­ni, de­li­ve­red a lec­tu­re de­di­ca­ted to the me­mory of the Spa­nish he­ro and the na­val battle of San­tia­go de Cu­ba, which took pla­ce on July 3, 1898.

The lar­ge tur­nout en­jo­yed an aut­hen­tic “di­ve in­to his­tory”, an ap­proach to the fa­mous Ad­mi­ral, as well as a clo­ser look at the cir­cums­tan­ces of tho­se war epi­so­des that to­day ser­ve as a twin­ning bet­ween the peo­ples of Cu­ba and Spain, so­met­hing that gi­ves tre­men­do­us va­lue to such terms so re­vi­led in the­se ti­mes as ho­me­land and pa­trio­tism.

This ex­hi­bi­tion, which teed off last year at the UNESCO head­quar­ters in Pa­ris, ho­pe­fully con­ti­nues its jour­ney th­rough ot­her Spa­nish, Eu­ro­pean, Cu­ban and Ame­ri­can lo­ca­tions, to ser­ve as a link that con­nects Bio­di­ver­sity, Culture, Un­der­wa­ter Heritage and His­tory, in ad­di­tion to ser­ving as a mo­ti­va­ting ele­ment of the co­llec­ti­ve conscience –which is badly nee­ded- with the in­ten­tion of whet­ting ci­ti­zens­hip's in­ter­est in the­se fun­da­men­tal is­sues for the pro­tec­tion of nature and the spread of a his­tory that we sha­re.

Cu­ba has go­ne the ex­tra mi­le to pre­ser­ve the wrecks of Al­mi­ran­te Cer­ve­ra’s sun­ken squa­dron, now con­si­de­red Na­tio­nal Heritage

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