Eight-year-old Fidel Castro fan, Marlon Mendez, delighted to chat with the former Cuban president in person. Gavino Garay reports.
From wall to wall, his room is plastered with images of the man who led the Cuban Revolution. This young 'comandante' has always wanted to meet his Idol, Fidel Castro. And one day, that dream came true eight-year-old Marlon Mendez, when he received an invitation from the former Cuban president to meet with him at his Havana home. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MARLON MENDEZ, YOUNG FIDEL CASTRO FAN, SAYING: "I felt very moved because it was my dream, when I saw him…my mother was shaking, she was crying, tears were falling. It was my dream to meet Fidel, we all gave him a hug." Marlon's grandmother says Fidel is younger than his years. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MARLON MENDEZ'S GRANDMOTHER, MARIA ELVIRA HERNANDEZ, SAYING: "Eighty-eight years is eight-eight years. But a lot of 88-year-olds would like to be like him. The Comandante stood up when we came in and greeted Marlon in the same way that Marlon greeted him. We want Fidel around for a lot longer." On August 12, a day before Castro's 88th birthday, Marlon was featured on Cuban television. Not long after, he was invited for a visit. While the eight-year-old dons the green fatigue, army boots, and cap like Fidel once wore -- it may take some time before he can copy Fidel's iconic beard.