Father of Amazon.com founder Bezos gives $12 million to Catholic school – Detroit Catholic: Read Catholic News & Stories

Miguel Bezos, the immigrant father of Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos, has donated $12 million to a Catholic school in Delaware that housed and educated him when he arrived as an unaccompanied minor from Cuba in the early 1960s. The senior Bezos attended Salesianum School in Wilmington, Delaware, after fleeing post-Revolution Cuba, along with over 14,000 other minors brought to the U.S. through Operation Pedro Pan, a program organized by the Catholic Church with the help of the U.S. government. Because Catholic social services agencies in Miami receiving the Cuban minors were overwhelmed, dioceses throughout the country began sending children to Catholic facilities and foster families throughout the country. Bezos ended up at a home for boys in Wilmington. Back then, Father James P. Byrne, of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, was put in charge of Casa de Sales, where Bezos was welcomed with other Cuban boys. “There was a priest in charge of us, and it was a tremendous experience for me. I’m sure you’ve heard sad stories about what terrible experiences some of the Peter Pan kids had, but for us in Wilmington, we had each other, and we became very close,” Bezos said in a 2016 interview posted on the website of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. “To this day, a lot of us still talk to each other and visit once in a while,” he said. “We also visit with the priest that was in charge of us. In the middle of all the chaos, it was a wonderful experience.” The donation, announced June 16, honors the priest, who died last year, and will be used for an endowment to fund the Rev. James P. Byrne, OSFS Scholarship.

Father of Amazon.com founder Bezos gives $12 million to Catholic school – Detroit Catholic: Read Catholic News & Stories

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