|Melba Hernández with Ricardo Alarcón|
Santamaria died in 1980. Alan Woods wrote in El Militante:
Haydée always opposed the "Sovietization", ie, the attempt to impose on Cuba rigid Stalinist bureaucracy and dogmatic thought and methodology. Tragically, she committed suicide in 1980.A lawyer by profession, Hernandez remained faithful to Fidel and Raúl Castro. She was a constant presence in the front row of rallies marking the July 26 attack that began the Cuban revolution.
Reaction to her death at age 92 was mixed.
Granma, the newspaper of Cuba's Communist Party, reported:
With deep sorrow, the leadership of the Party and the State informed our people that Moncada heroine Melba Hernández Rodríguez del Rey, member of the Central Party Committee and deputy to the National People's Assembly, died in Havana the night of Sunday March 9, as a result of complications associated with diabetes mellitus, a disease she suffered for many years.Marc Masferrer, creator of Uncommon Sense, a blog dedicated to political prisoners in Cuba, wrote simply:
Good riddance.Clarissa Lima, one of his Facebook friends, replied:
Wish she'd taken some of her "friends" with her.
|Raúl Castro greets Hernández during a July 26 rally|