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For Immediate Release:
May 17, 2011
Media Contact:
Gerard Philippeaux

305-375-4833

Commissioner Jean Monestime honors survivor of 2010 Haiti earthquake during Haitian Cultural Heritage Month


During the May 17, 2011 Miami-Dade Commission meeting, Commissioner Jean Monestime celebrated Haitian Cultural Heritage Month by honoring Romel Joseph, musician and survivor of the devastating earthquake that hit Haiti in January 2010. 

Born in Haiti, Mr. Romel Joseph is a violinist and Fulbright recipient who graduated with Master of Arts from Juilliard.  Partially blind since birth, Joseph was trapped in rubble after the January 12th earthquake for 18 hours before he was finally rescued. He owed his survival to prayers and concertos, both of which he recited while pinned down and not knowing if he would live.

Joseph was later treated at Jackson Memorial Hospital where he recovered and is now doing what he knows best, changing lives and making a difference through music.

"Today, by paying tribute to this outstanding human being, we are honoring his strength, his spirit and his love for the children of Haiti," said Commissioner Monestime, who presented Joseph with a proclamation. 

Commissioner Jean Monestime (left) with Romel Joseph.
Photo caption: Commissioner Jean Monestime (left) with Romel Joseph.

Commissioners Sally A. Heyman and Jean Monestime, Romel Joseph, Vice Chairwoman Audrey M. Edmonson, Victoria Joseph (Mr. Joseph's daughter), and Commissioner Lynda Bell.
Photo caption 2: (L-R) Commissioners Sally A. Heyman and Jean Monestime, Romel Joseph, Vice Chairwoman Audrey M. Edmonson, Victoria Joseph (Mr. Joseph's daughter), and Commissioner Lynda Bell.

(Photo credits: Armando Rodriguez/Miami-Dade County)