Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Body of exile slain in Cuba returns to Florida

Posted on Wednesday, 06.30.10
Body of exile slain in Cuba returns to Florida

The body of a Cuban exile slain on the island two weeks ago has been
returned to Miami, and a Naples funeral home will handle funeral
services, family members said.

Meanwhile, the woman's injured husband has been ordered to remain in
Cuba pending the end of an official investigation in the case, the
family said.

The couple, Layda Licet Recio and Rolando Suárez, were attacked and
beaten while visiting relatives in Cuba in early May.

Recio died from a blow to the head. Suárez had been hospitalized but was
released earlier this week.

``He is better now, but the government in Cuba won't let him come home
until the investigation concludes,'' Aurelia Rodríguez, mother of the
slain woman, said Wednesday.

Her daughter's body arrived at Miami International Airport and was
transported to Muller-Thompson Funeral Chapel in Naples. A viewing was
scheduled for Thursday from 5 to 9 p.m. and burial is at 11 a.m. Friday
at Naples Memorial Gardens.

Recio's family in Florida lives in Lehigh Acres, near Naples.

Recio, 40, and Suárez, 43, were attacked during a birthday party May 7
outside the family home in their hometown of Santiago in eastern Cuba.

Two men armed with iron bars or wooden sticks filled with cement
attacked the couple, killing Recio with a blow to the head and seriously
injuring Suárez.

The attack did not appear to be random. The perpetrators, both under
arrest, were known to the couple or their Santiago relatives, family
members said.

``They apparently were from the neighborhood,'' Rodríguez told El Nuevo

Recio and her husband have three daughters -- Lianet, 11; Rina, 12; and
Lian, 18. They did not travel to Cuba with their parents but remained
behind with family members.

The case drew the attention of the Cuban exile community in South
Florida because the couple were among the first travelers from abroad to
visit Cuba after the May 1 start of a Cuban government mandatory medical
insurance policy for foreign travelers.

At first, Recio's family in Florida complained that the Cuban insurance
policy would not cover costs associated with the tragedy. But on
Tuesday, Rodríguez said the problem was nearly resolved.

The Cuban government statement said the Cuban insurance service would
pay up to $7,000 to return Recio's body and cover costs associated with
Suárez's hospital stay and treatment.

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