Miami Dade College

In Miami's Little Havana, Cubans whoop, dance and reflect as they celebrate Castro's death

In Miami's Little Havana, Cubans whoop, dance and reflect as they celebrate Castro's death

Early Saturday morning, Salma Bustamante woke up her father, Nemesio, with just a few words: “Papi, he died.”

Nemesio, 89, a former journalist, understood she meant Fidel Castro, the former president of his Cuban homeland.

Within a few hours, the frail exile was sitting in a wheelchair in the middle of Little Havana, eyes misting as thousands of his fellow countrymen took to the streets to dance, whoop and bang wooden spoons on metal pots and pans. 

Dressed in a sharply pressed blue, button-down shirt and a short-brim straw fedora, he cradled a framed black-and-white photograph of the Bustamante family — including Salma, at age 4, arriving...

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