When, in 1993, she suffered burns in about
40 per cent of her body due to a home accident, not many people
believed that this mulatto woman, born in the far eastern town
of Palma Soriano, would be able to run again over the tracks
of the world.
Cuban science made all possible efforts in her recovery; so
did she. The flames had seriously damaged her skin, but they
could not even touch her will of heroine. That immense proof
of love made her return to the stadiums, which she did with
all the glory she deserved: she won the gold medal with a time
of 1:56.11 at the World Championship held in Gothemburg, Sweden.
History would repeat itself in the following world competition,
taking place two years after that in Greece. Her time: 1:57.14.
The great are always great. She was already thinking of saying
good-bye to competitions because a greater strength was taking
over her feelings. She wanted to be a mother.
Born on July 26th, 1961, her inborn talent was first appreciated
in her own hometown, near the city of Santiago de Cuba. Her
first international competition took place on April 13th 1985.
When she retired from active sport she zealously treasured two
Olympic medals: bronze in Barcelona'92 and silver in Atlanta'96.
Her curriculum vitae displays also victories in the 800m of
five Grand Prix competitions: 1987 (1:58.80); 1989 (1:59.02),
and 1991 (2:00.17); as well as other two in the 400m: 1988 (50.27)
and 1990 (50.31).
Nevertheless, her two most treasured trophies nowadays are named
Fidelia and Alberto Alejandro. She lives surrounded by her beloved,
but she has never fully abandoned the tracks. She has said:
"I'll run from time to time in some veteran's competitions
in order to show everyone I'm still in shape."