Soledad O’Brien Mourns Her Cuban Mom’s Death Just 40 Days After Her Father Passes Away
It’s been a difficult 2019 for Soledad O’Brien. On Monday, the former CNN anchor announced that her Cuban-born mother, Estela, had passed away, just 40 days after her father, Edward, died.
“She was a pretty remarkable lady,” the Afro-Latina journalist wrote on Twitter about her late mother along with a photo of her living in Cuba in the 1930s.
In the tweet, O’Brien, who is of Cuban and Irish descent, notes that her mother was an immigrant from the Caribbean country and that she once lived with the Oblate Sisters of Providence in Baltimore while she was in college.
“She always was sad about leaving Cuba — but hated how Castro had destroyed her country. She went back once to visit — and said — I’ll never go back again,” she said of Estela alongside a photo of her taken in the 1940s.
In the thread announcing both her parents’ passing, she stated that her mother grew up poor, but was able to move to the United States to receive an education. While in Maryland, she met Edward. At the time they fell in love, mixed-race marriages were outlawed.
“The year their sixth child (my little brother) was born, the US Supreme Court would overturn the ban on interracial marriage,” she said, sharing a photo of her parents together.
O’Brien, who currently anchors a weekly public-affairs talk show called Matter of Fact with Soledad O’Brien and is the founder and chairwoman of Starfish Media Group, a multi-platform media production, referred to her mother as “a pretty remarkable lady,” noting her accomplishments, like being fluent in three languages — Spanish, English and French — becoming an educator and sending all six of her children to college, with some also attending grad school.
While honoring her mother, O’Brien said she hoped all working women had “access to her wisdom.” The journalist then shared some of the best advice her late mother had once given her: “Everyone gets the same 24 hours. Decide how you’ll spend yours;” “Take 24 hours to sit in bed and cry … then stop complaining and make a list and plan your comeback;” “Keep ten dollars in your bra so you can leave when you want;” “People are basically full of s—, stop taking their stupidity to heart;” and lastly, “You never stop fighting for the important stuff.”
Estela’s insightful guidance has undoubtedly served in shaping her own brilliant and sensational daughter.
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