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Elian Gonzalez, Cuban Raft Survivor, Turns 18 [View All]

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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-11 12:54 AM
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Elian Gonzalez, Cuban Raft Survivor, Turns 18
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Source: Associated Press

Elian Gonzalez, Cuban Raft Survivor, Turns 18
12/ 6/11 10:02 PM ET



HAVANA -- Elian Gonzalez, the Cuban boy who survived a perilous raft journey that killed his mother and became a symbol of troubled relations between the United States and Cuba, is now an adult.

Gonzalez currently studies at a military academy on the island and took part in an 18th birthday celebration Tuesday in his native city of Cardenas alongside his father, according to images broadcast on the nightly news.

Gonzalez was shy of his sixth birthday on Thanksgiving Day 1999 when a fisherman found him off the coast of Florida, clinging to an inner tube after his mother and others fleeing Cuba drowned trying to reach American soil.

He was taken to live with relatives in Miami but his father, who was separated from his mother and had remained on the island, demanded that the boy be sent back, saying Elian was taken without his consent. The dispute turned into a headline-grabbing international custody battle that weighed heavy on the 2000 presidential race between George W. Bush and Al Gore.

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/06/elian-gonzalez...
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