Good Student and Classmate. That is the way Grettell Landrove is remembered

Grettel Landrove Font was known to be an excellent student, always caring about her classmates. A disciplined girl determined to overcome any obstacle. She was one of the three survivors of the plane crash. Sadly, she passed away this Monday.

She would be graduated from Industrial Engineering at the Polytechnic University Jose Antonio Echeverria (CUJAE) this year. In her sixth year, she was immersed in the conclusion of her thesis on the redesign of the Hotel Tryp Habana Libre.

Classmates, professors, and management board of the above-mentioned university, leaders of the Federation of University Students (FEU), among others, shared the sad hours with Grettell’s family and friends in the funeral ceremonies held at the funeral parlor located in Calzada and K Streets.

Ariacne Jimenez and Ania Diaz told CAN that both joined Grettell as a team. All had the same professor, thesis tutor, and subject.

Her death has been a devastating blow. We are deeply sad at the university. Those who go to know her in the year and a half she lived here in Havana after coming from the University of Holguin, can attest she was intelligent, easy-going girl, full of life and dreams.

We were three Grettells in the classroom. And every time we faced an exam, and some comments led you think one of us had failed, you can bet Landrove Font did not. That is why it hurts so much that one month prior to get her degree as Industrial Engineer, she cannot fulfill such dream, Grettel Gakin said.

Karen Lopez, Claudia Pena, and William Castellanos stated that she had a good-natured mood. She was friendly and did her best to obtain good results in every test. She sometimes asked to do some of the exams in an extraordinary period so she could honor her work.

The young girl, one of the three survivors of the plane crash that occurred in Havana last Friday, was hospitalized at the Intensive Care Unit of the Calixto Garcia Hospital, as she had severe brain injuries.

At the time of her death, she was extremely critical and the multidisciplinary medical team could not reverse the situation, according to the official statement of the Ministry of Public Health.

With Grettell’s death, the number of victims rises to 111.

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Diaz//CubaSi Translation Staff

Cuba united in grief

The Cuban people and authorities have mobilized to provide victims’ loved ones with all the support at this difficult time - Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, President of the Councils of State and Ministers, participated in the last day of the Response to Disasters Popular Exercise, Meteoro 2018. 

- Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, President of the Councils of State and Ministers, participated in the last day of the Response to Disasters Popular Exercise, Meteoro 2018.

- The Cuban President recognized the capacity of the Civil Defense System and the popular participation in these events, as well as the high level of preparedness shown.

- Díaz-Canel highlighted the solidarity shown by the Cuban people to the relatives of victims of the plane crash in Havana, Friday, May 18, and the will to create the conditions to attend to them.

- He noted that the Meteoro 2018 exercise allowed for the updating of plans regarding the measures to be adopted in disaster situations, based on the experiences following Hurricane Irma.

- Díaz-Canel, together with the Second Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba, José Ramón Machado Ventura, and Party and government authorities of Havana, visited on Saturday, May 19, the relatives of the victims of the plane crash.

- It is important that they know they are not alone, the Party and the government supports them, stated Salvador Valdés Mesa, First Vice President of the Councils of State and Ministers, in a meeting with the loved ones of the victims of the air disaster.

- A total of 113 people were onboard the aircraft, 58 female and 55 male. Six were Mexican crew members and 107 passengers. Of the latter, 102 were Cuban citizens, three were foreign tourists (two Argentines and one Mexican), and two Saharans with temporary residency in Cuba. 110 people died.

- The three survivors, who have been identified, have highly complex injuries. They are in a critical condition and the prognosis is guarded, but they are being attended by a highly specialized team.

- At press time, the remains of 33 of the victims had been identified.

- The relatives of the Mexican crew have traveled to Cuba. The same procedure was followed with them as with the other relatives: biological samples were taken and interviews conducted as part of the detailed information collection process.

- The Ambassador of Mexico to Cuba, together with the victims’ relatives, traveled to the Institute of Legal Medicine, and ratified his confidence in Cuba in this type of work.

- The commission created to investigate the case is rigorously following protocol, according to the established norms.

- The aircraft’s black box was recovered and is in a good condition. Data is still being sought, explained Adel Yzquierdo Rodríguez, minister of transport.

- “We are now proceeding to collect the aggregate data that, although impaired, maintains its configuration and permits revision in secure airport institutions. From there, specialists will start work on each of the systems,” stated Armando L. Daniel López, president of Cuban Civil Aeronautics Institute and the commission created to investigate the accident.

- Two Mexican investigators are working at the site of the accident, as the plane was registered to Mexico, and European and U.S. experts are also expected to arrive, the latter representing the manufacturers of the Boeing 737-200 aircraft.

- Heads of State, personalities and citizens around the world have voiced their solidarity with the Cuban people following the tragedy.

In Possession of Relatives Identified Remains of Air Disaster in Cuba

The director of the Institute of Forensic Medicine of Cuba, Sergio Rabell, stated today that 36 relatives were in possession of the remains identified until the moment of the air disaster ocurred last Friday in this capital.

In statements to journalists, the official said that experts continue to work to establish the identity of the other 74 fatal victims of the accident in the Boeing 737-200, leased by Cubana de Aviación, which with 113 people on board crashed shortly after taking off from the José Martí International airport.

Rabell offered details of the process at the Institute's headquarters and assured that 'when we give a positive identification, we are 100% certaint that the body we are delivering is what we say it is'.

When the person is identified, a group moves to the place where the family members are so that they do not have to come and to alleviate their pain, a team that includes specialists, Civil Registry authorities in charge of preparing the documents, psychologists and psychiatrists, among others, he pointed out.

He also explained that a system of at least two daily parts has been created to keep both Cuban and foreign relatives informed.

  • Published in Cuba

Cuba Plane Crash: Solidarity and Support Amid Pain

Cuba President Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez and the Second Secretary of the Party, José Ramón Machado Ventura, visited the relatives of the victims of the air accident occurred last Friday in Havana

Investigations continue on the accident occurred Friday at noon in the Cuban capital, in a place in which more than 30 legal medicine specialists are still identifying dead bodies.

Cuban Transport Minister Adel Izquierdo stated to national and foreign reporters Sunday that the specialists are intensely working on a cultivation area close to Havana’s Jose Marti International Airport, in which a Boeing 737-200 hired by Cubana de Aviacion with 113 people on board, crashed down.

Izquierdo said that representatives of the airplane’s manufacturer, the US company Boeing, will arrive on the island, and also international experts and insurers.

We will give them all the needed things to do their work, in line with the protocols and international standards, he said.

For his part, Deputy Health Minister Alfredo Gonzalez reported that up to Saturday afternoon 15 of the 110 fatal victims of the disaster (five minors and 10 adults) had been identified.

For his part, Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel toured facilities related to the incident the day before, including the hospital where survivors are treated, the Institute of Legal Medicine and a Havana hotel that houses relatives of the victims.

Díaz-Canel reiterated the condolences of the Cuban government and people to the people affected by the tragedy.

From several latitudes more solidarity messages arrive today in Cuba after the plane crash last Friday in this capital, in which a hundred people died.

Since the tragedy occurred, countries in Latin America, Europe and Asia sent various messages of solidarity to the largest of the Antilles.

On behalf of the Government and people of Bolivia, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of that country expressed its deep sorrow for the human losses due to the disaster.

The Chilean government expressed its condolences to the Caribbean island due to the accident of the airplane that fell ashore shortly after taking off.

Letters from Panama, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Brazil, Peru, Venezuela and Colombia also expressed their support to Cuba that remains mourning the pain of losing a hundred inhabitans.

Austrian Federal Minister for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, Karin Kneissl, sent a message of sorrow to the Cuban people, while Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic and Prime Minister Ana Brnabic also conveyed their condolences.

Angolan President, Joao Lourenzo, and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, expressed their sorrow for the tragedy, in which 110 people died, including five minors.

The Canadian government also conveyed its condolences to the Cuban people, while Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi expressed deep sorrow over the unfortunate event.

Mexico's Foreign Ministry Confirms 7 Mexican Citizens Dead in Cuba Plane Crash

Mexico's Foreign Ministry confirmed deaths of seven country's citizens in the Friday plane crash near the Cuban capital of Havana.

"The Mexican government through the Foreign Ministry says that based on the official information we can confirm the sorrowful fact that seven Mexican citizens (six crew members and one passenger) died as a result of the incident with the jet of the Cubana de Aviacion company on Friday at the Jose Marti International Airport in Havana," the Foreign Ministry said on Saturday in a statement.

The plane crashed on Friday shortly after a take-off from Havana leaving over 100 people killed. Causes of the incident remain unknown. On Saturday, Cuban experts found one of two black boxes of the crashed plane.

The black box, found on Saturday, is in a good condition, the EFE news agency reported citing Transport Minister Adel Yzquierdo without saying whether the experts found a flight data recorder or a cockpit voice recorder. According to the minister, the experts continue to look for the second device.

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Putin Expresses Condolences to Cuban Leader Over Boeing 737 Crash

Putin has expressed his condolences to the Cuban leader Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez over the recent Boeing 737 crash near José Marti International Airport in Cuba and wished a speedy recovery for those who survived the crash, Kremlin said.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a telegram of condolences to Cuban leader Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, over a deadly crash of a passenger jet in Havana airport, the Kremlin said in a statement Friday.

"The Russian head of state conveyed words of sympathy and support to the families and friends of those killed, as well as wishes of a speedy recovery to those who survived the crash," the telegram says.

Boeing 737 carrying 104 passengers and crew crashed shortly after a takeoff from the José Marti International Airport in Cuba. It was reported shortly after the crash that three people on the plane had survived, however, worker at Havana’s Calixto Garcia hospital told Reuters later that one of the crash survivors had died from burns and other trauma.

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Cuba Woke Up in Mourning after Aviation Accident

Havana, May 19 (Prensa Latina) Cuba meets today an official mourning after the tragic plane crash occurred the day before in Havana, when a Boeing 737 leased by Cubana de Aviación fell ashore at the moment of takeoff.

From 06:00 (local time) and until 12:00 pm on May 20, the national flag will remain at half-mast in public buildings and military institutions.

In the national flight DMJ 0972, which ran from Havana to Holguin, 104 passengers traveled, of which five were foreign citizens and the rest Cubans. The six-crew members were also foreigners.

During the last hours, many signs of solidarity for the tragic accident continued to arrive in the largest of the Antilles, where only three people survived, who remain in serious condition.

The president of China, Xi Jinping, expressed his regret to his Cuban counterpart, Miguel Diaz-Canel, for the tragedy, which affected him deeply and asked to extend his condolences to the relatives of the deceased.

In Russia, Prime Minister Dimitri Medvedev sent a telegram to the Cuban president asking him to convey his condolences and support to the families and relatives of the victims.

From the Vatican, Pope Francis sent a message of condolences for the victims of the tragic event near the José Martí airport in Havana, and offered his 'suffrages for the eternal rest of the disappeared' and 'his closeness to the wounded'.

At the same time, he conveyed expressions of consolation for the relatives who in this hour of pain mourn the unexpected separation of their loved ones.

The president of Angola, Joao Lourenzo, also expressed his solidarity with the Cuban government and people.

  • Published in Cuba

Cuban Authorities Investigate Crash of Mexican Plane in Havana

The president of the Cuban Aviation Corporation, Roberto Peña, said here that an investigation is already underway about the fatal accident of a Mexican commercial plane near Jose Marti International Airport that left 111 people dead and 3 critically wounded.

A Boeing 737-200 of Damojh airline chartered by Cubana de Aviacion for a domestic flight Havana-Holguin (eastern Cuba) crashed immediately after takeoff from Jose Marti international Airport. President Miguel Diaz-Canel came to the site of the crash where he instructed a full investigation on the cause of the accident and conveyed sympathy for the families of the victims.

We will keep the public opinion informed once the entire investigation process has been completed, Peña told national television on Friday night.

On the flight DMJ 0972 with foreign crew there were 104 passengers on board and nine crew members. The plane crashed on a plantation field between the airport and the town of Santiago de las Vegas, in the southern Havanian municipality of Boyeros. No one on the ground was hurt.

The director of Calixto Garcia University Hospital told the Cuban television the three survivors are stable but with uncertain prognosis.

  • Published in Cuba
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