Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Bill Nelson (D-FL) introduced today a Senate Resolution honoring the life and legacy of Miami Marlins star pitcher Jose Fernandez, who was killed in a tragic boating accident early Sunday morning along with two of his friends, Emilio Macias and Eduardo Rivero. The resolution highlights Fernandez’s inspirational journey to America, success in the MLB, and contributions to Florida.
“Jose Fernandez was the embodiment of the American Dream,” said Rubio. “He risked his life escaping tyranny in Cuba to seek liberty and opportunity in America. Jose was thrown in jail by the Castro regime for attempting to flee, and when his mother fell overboard into choppy waters during their journey, Jose risked his life to save her so they could arrive in America together. It is a testament to the kind of person he was. This resolution honors Jose’s life, legacy and contributions to the people and state of Florida.
“As a star pitcher for the Miami Marlins, he brought so much joy to the team’s fans and the South Florida community,” added Rubio. “Jeanette and I are devastated by this loss, and our thoughts and prayers are with the families of all three young men.”
“Jose Fernandez was a remarkable young man whose talent and passion for the game of baseball brought joy to so many in South Florida,” said Nelson. “He will certainly be missed both on and off the field, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends during this difficult time.”
The full text of the resolution is below.
Title: Recognizing and honoring the life of Jose Fernandez.
Whereas Jose Fernandez was born in Santa Clara, Cuba, on July 31, 1992;
Whereas Jose Fernandez attempted to escape Cuba on 4 separate occasions and was imprisoned by the Cuban government for doing so;
Whereas during one of his attempts to escape Cuba, Jose Fernandez saved the life of his mother by diving into the water to rescue her after she fell into the Yucatan channel;
Whereas Jose Fernandez came to the United States on April 5, 2008;
Whereas Jose Fernandez was a graduate of Braulio Alonso High School in Tampa, Florida;
Whereas Jose Fernandez was drafted by the Miami Marlins in the first round of the 2011 Major League Baseball Draft as the 14th overall selection;
Whereas, on August 15, 2011, Jose Fernandez signed with the Miami Marlins;
Whereas Jose Fernandez started his first Major League Baseball game on April 7, 2013;
Whereas Jose Fernandez won the 2013 National League Rookie of the Year award;
Whereas Jose Fernandez became a United States citizen on April 24, 2015;
Whereas Jose Fernandez was a 2-time All-Star, with a career record of 38 wins, 17 losses, 589 strikeouts, and a 2.58 earned run average;
Whereas Jose Fernandez gave back to his community through charities such as Live Like Bella and the Marlins Ayudan;
Whereas, on September 25, 2016, Jose Fernandez died in a tragic boating accident with his 2 friends, Emilio Macias and Eduardo Rivero;
Whereas Emilio Macias and Eduardo Rivero graduated from G. Holmes Braddock Senior High School in Miami, Florida;
Whereas Jose Fernandez, through his hard work, devotion, and optimism, brought great joy to his family, especially his mother and grandmother; and
Whereas Jose Fernandez came to embody the American dream and was a great source of pride for the Cuban exile community of the United States: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Senate—
(1) honors the life and accomplishments of Jose Fernandez;
(2) offers heartfelt condolences to—
(A) the family, friends, loved ones, and teammates of Jose Fernandez; and
(B) the family and friends of Emilio Macias and Eduardo Rivero;
(3) commends the significant contributions that Jose Fernandez made, on and off the field, to—
(A) the City of Tampa, Florida;
(B) the City of Miami, Florida; and
(C) the State of Florida; and
(4) recognizes the memory of Jose Fernandez as an inspiration for all who seek freedom and a better life in the United States.