Memories of Che, a Revolutionary Son of Ireland
McDonald, Brian, The Independent (London, England)
FOR THE daughter of Che Guevara, the visit to Galway on the west coast of Ireland was something of a homecoming.
If she had chosen to walk on to the footpath outside the front door of the Great Southern Hotel, where she was holding media interviews and hosting a series of meetings, Dr Aleida Guevara would almost certainly have met a distant relative.
And if she was in need of further reassurance about her whereabouts, the Cuban paediatrician would probably have found it just a stone's throw away, where Galway's most fashionable nightclub is named after her homeland.
Dr Guevara is in the Republic of Ireland to explore her roots and, by association, the family tree of her father, the Latin American guerrilla leader. Galway was a vital stop. The town - population 60,000 - is home to the descendants of the Lynches, one of the 14 great tribes who once ruled the area.
Their influence continues. Lynch's Castle dominates the city centre; Lynch's Restaurant does the best lunchtime trade on the west coast; while the Lynch window, from where a mayor of Galway hanged his son in medieval times, is possibly the town's biggest tourist trap. But until Dr Guevara's visit, few tourists would have been aware that Che Guevara was descended from those self-same Lynches.
The history runs something like this. Patrick Lynch of Lydican Castle near Galway married Agnes Blake, and their second son, Patrick, was born in 1715. Patrick left Ireland in the 1740s and settled in Buenos Aires in 1749.
His merchant background - Galway as a coastal town was a regular port of call for trading ships from around the world - served him well in his new environment. He succeeded in business and married Rosa de Galaya de la Camera, a wealthy heiress.
It was from this marriage that Che's grandmother, Ana Lynch y Ortiz, was descended. She married Roberto Guevara Castro, and their eldest son was Ernesto Guevara Lynch, …
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Publication information: Article title: Memories of Che, a Revolutionary Son of Ireland. Contributors: McDonald, Brian - Author. Newspaper title: The Independent (London, England). Publication date: March 21, 2002. Page number: 11. © 2009 The Independent - London. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All Rights Reserved.