Rafael Guas Inclan


Born in Havana, 1896.


Died in Miami, Oct. 12, 1975.                         


Son of Cuban independence general and senator of the republic Carlos Guas Pagueras. On Feb. 19, 1916, was injured during a student protest against Conservative President Menocal. A graduate of the University of Havana Law School where he taught classes. Life-long member of the Liberal Party, in 1925 was the youngest elected person to the Cuban Chamber of Representatives, which he presided until 1933. Went into exile in Miami, Florida, with his father and brother Gregorio after President Gerardo Machado was overthrown in August 1933. The three were involved in an automobile accident in Miami on Dec. 6, 1935, as a result of which their father died. The brothers returned to Cuba to bury his corpse. Delegate to the Cuban Constitutional Convention 1939-40. Served as senator (1940-44) and governor of Havana province (1944-48). Minister of Communications 1953-54. As president of the Liberal Party, was elected vice president of Cuba in 1954 as a compromise candidate under Fulgencio Batista. In 1958, while Fidel Castro was fighting a guerrilla war, he challenged him to run for the presidential elections that year. Elected Mayor of Havana in November 1958 but did not assume the post after Castro seized power on January 1, 1959. A street mob burned his law office that day. Sought asylum in the Chilean Embassy in Havana and returned to exile in Miami penniless with his wife and children. Volunteered to join Brigade 2506 prior to the April 1961 CIA-sponsored Bay of Pigs invasion but was rejected due to his advanced age. His son, Carlos Guas Decal, died in combat at the Bay of Pigs. In his later years, wrote for the Diario las Americas in Miami, discussing politics and hunting, his hobby. He was active in the “Alianza por la Libertad de Cuba” exile organization. Resided in the Robert King High Towers public housing and died in poverty.