Father, Son and doctors started as Cuban refugees

MIAMI (AP) — Almost 55 years ago, Dr. Jorge Vallejo told his colleagues at a Havana hospital that he needed to rush home to check on one of his toddler sons who had a fever. That was a lie.

He actually went home to pack some clothes before he, his wife and two boys boarded a torpedo boat named “La Gaviota.” Before the sun rose the next day, the Vallejos and other Cuban refugees sailed across the Florida Straits, braving a storm that left them stranded at sea.

The U.S. Coast Guard rescued them and towed the boat into Key West, where Vallejo began a new chapter in the U.S., eventually establishing himself as a prominent OB-GYN in a community of exiles and the patriarch of a family of Cuban American doctors.

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