The grandson of Cuban exiles grew up to be UM’s first Cuban-American head football coach.
Correspondent Andrea Kremer sat down with Manny Diaz Jr, the newly appointed Miami Hurricanes head coach and grandson of Cuban exiles to hear his remarkable family story.
Diaz Jr’s father and grandmother, Elisa Diaz, fled communist Cuba in 1961 in search of freedom and prosperity. With little to their name, and with Elisa’s husband still in Cuba as a prisoner of the Fidel Castro regime, Elisa worked tirelessly to create an opportunity for her family. She eventually climbed out of poverty by cleaning hotel rooms.
In 2001 Manny Diaz Senior was elected mayor of Miami, where he served two terms. Seventeen years later Manny Diaz Jr became the first Cuban-American head football coach at the University of Miami.
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