The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Featured Story

October 21, 2012

In Cuban missile showdown, 2 brothers faced own crisis

MIAMI — Julio Castro sat at his uncle's Miami home as President John F. Kennedy came on the television the night of Oct. 22, 1962, to tell the nation the Soviet Union was building launch sites for nuclear missiles in Cuba capable of reaching almost every city in the Western Hemisphere.



Castro had fled the Caribbean island earlier that year, and his parents and siblings were still there. He'd joined the U.S. Army in August, thinking that with the help of a superpower, he and the growing contingent of exiles in Miami could defeat the communists who had taken control nearly four years before.

Now the world was on the verge of a nuclear war. Castro stood ready for his orders, ready to do anything to secure the United States and free his family. Even kill.

Ninety miles away, his brother was prepared to do the same.

Unbeknownst to one another, Julio and Jose Castro had both enlisted in the military, the older brother with the United States, the younger with Cuba. As the U.S. and the Soviets inched closer to catastrophe half a century ago this month, one brother stood in the trenches watching Soviet troops set up outside Havana, while the other awaited orders in Miami.

Each well knows what may have happened had Kennedy heeded some advisors' call to invade Cuba.

And each knew his role.

"War is war," says Julio Castro, now 71.

If it comes down to it, his 69-year-old brother says in Spanish, "you fire at the enemy."

___

Growing up before the revolution, the brothers shared a close bond.

As a teenager, Julio Castro remembers enjoying the delights of Havana: He would go around the city in his red Austin Healey coupe and hit the clubs with friends. His brother imagined doing the same when he was old enough.

Text Only
Featured Story
Featured Ads
AP Video
Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case Author Gabriel Garcia Marquez Dead at 87 Beau Biden Plans 2016 Run for Del. Governor Chelsea Clinton Is Pregnant Horseless Carriage Introduced at NY Auto Show Obama Hopeful on Ukraine, Will Watch Russians Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction Crew Criticized Over Handling of Ferry Disaster Agreement Reached to Calm Ukraine Tensions Raw: Pope Francis Performs Pre-easter Ritual Boston Bombing Survivors One Year Later Sister of Slain MIT Officer Reflects on Bombing
NDN Video
Funny: Celebrating Easter with Martha Stewart and Friends Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Man hit with $525 federal fine after he doesn't pay for soda refill Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper New West, Texas Explosion Video Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday Don't Be A Tattletale: Bad Bullying Tips For Students The trillest thoughts on marijuana "RHOA" Star Charged With Battery Grizzly Bears Get Snowy Birthday Party Weatherman draws forecast when another technical glitch strikes WGN Elizabeth Olsen's Sexy Shoot Bay Area Teen Gets Prom Date With Help From 'Breaking Bad' Star Boston Bomb Scare Defendant Appears in Court Behind The Tanlines Jersey Strong Part 1 WATCH: Women Fight To Marry Prince Harry! Jenny McCarthy Engaged to "New Kid"
House Ads
Facebook