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  • 08 / 14 / 2007

A dignified stage of life
Perhaps his teachers spoiled him too much. They knew about his slow moving, his difficulty holding things properly and his poor eyesight. Nevertheless, they did their best and every week at the seniors home where he lives they gave him a mixture of love and education.

A year went by and a few days ago Luis Gonzalo received his diploma as a graduate from the University for the Elderly.

Now, Eusebio Celestinos final paper is a gift to young people. It was to them that he dedicated pieces of advice loaded with wisdom and experience. He didnt set out to write a reference manual, but his knowledge and experiences are included.

With a clear voice and no stuttering, he conversed with his classmates who are also his housemates. I didnt expect this, said Eusebio, and, with a smile, confessed he was very happy. His friends understand how he feels, because they also know about joy. Together, they lived days of physical exercise, pottery making, and lessons on History and Natural Sciences etc.


Eusebio Celestino Gonzalez adds the nervousness of an unrepeatable moment to his happiness. Physical disability could be attributed to him due to his wheel chair. He looks thin, and his body shows the marks of time but he surprised everyone at his graduation ceremony with his strong cry of Long Live a Free Cuba!

He didnt expect that, at 83, his life at the seniors home where he lives in Havana could combine knowledge and patriotism. "This is great. I dont know how to thank people for so much joy."

Eusebio carries the vigor of his youth inside him, and assures hes still strong enough to pick up the thread of anecdotes of his life. From those stories that made him strong, he took the willpower to get accustomed to classroom.

The education provided by his teachers helped him share his memories about the Bay of Pigs, in which he recounts his proximity to death. Its the best way he can graduate, since both pride and learning are included in them.

Other elderly residents of the home, such as Rafael Santiuste, Santiago Eloy, Evaristo Rojas or Nila Victoria, also feel their graduation has given them more usefulness in life. By way of their words of advice, smiles or hope, they do what they have to do, look into the future, and know they still have a lot to live.

Source: Katia Siberio García, Granma

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