Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic – Robert Puason enjoys a great present, it promises a promising future, but the tears leave him naked when it comes to remember the hardships that together with his family lived in a heartbreaking past, marked by extreme poverty in the Batey Peligro, Guaymate .
Until a few weeks ago the indigence hit rudely to the Puasón-Pérez. The father, Rosendo, was a farm worker and the cane fields in Central Romana, the mother, Luisa, went out early to sell items, in one hand she carried sweets and peanuts and in the other, bottles of gas, all over the batey. 93 small houses and the neighborhood roads that border the sugarcane fields.
Her older sister, Katherine was born deaf and Robert is the second member of a family of four children, which may well have been five, but nine years ago, her mother lost a child within days of being born.
He had been a rookie couple of days ago, after signing $ 5.1 million with the Oakland Athletics. As a child, he was looking for water, ordering and throwing trash for pay, even asking for money at traffic lights, all with the goal of help in something in the house, as his parents were in the streets looking for the little money of the house, his two little brothers, Carolin (today 13 years old) and Roger (11 years old) were in his custody and it was him they they cried hungry.
“I had no problem until I spent several hours asking at the traffic lights, talking to a friend who worked in a grocery store to give me something to eat, in most cases I did not pay him, but it was a way to get my house something to feed my two brothers, “Robert says tearfully as he recalls those bitter moments in which misery knocked the pulse of a family that although succumbed on the canvas did not give up.
Eating flour and buying bread covers was the mainstay of a family that often had nothing to eat and the today well-boned torpedoon often ingeniabas to bring some food to his two little brothers, as the oldest of the family remained more time at his grandparents’ house.
“The times we had were very hard, life hit us very hard, but we always entrusted ourselves to God so that one day he would enlighten us and although we passed all possible hardships, he finally could reward us,” says Carlos, nicknamed Rosendo and who a few minutes after the interview with Listín Diario, she broke into tears after recalling the moments of misery in which the family developed.
The economic tightness was such that when Robert had to attend a baseball league trip in which he played this fact caused an unbalanced livelihood in the family and in fact the only child only attended 50 percent of the baseball games that the Baseball League where he played was scheduled in other cities.
“Ask for balls”, walking long kilometers to get to work was very frequent for the parents of the now signed player, who sometimes ran into his parents on the road waiting for a good Samaritan to transport them to work, this when his mother He found a small job in the free zone.
They only ate meats some Saturdays when Luisa was given a chicken sheath in the company, they cooked in wood in a stove made with two old truck hats, while the four brothers managed to sleep all in a small bed.
“I still remember those days when I had my table to cook on the outside of the house,” recalls Luisa about her small one-bedroom home and presented to Listin Diario the improvised stove that still exists in most of the houses, in which the stoves are few known.
Despite the hardships Robert played in the baseball league that Giriel Martinez ran and he only asked God to let him develop and become a good baseball player. 11 years lived in the small wooden houses in the Batey Peligro, later they moved to another place, but they were evicted, because they could not pay the rent of 2 thousand pesos a month.
Light at the end of the tunnel
When Robert Puason was 11 years old, Giriel, owner of a League, brought him to Santo Domingo to train in the program of Cristian Batista (Niche), but he did not like it and he was back in Guaymate, but after a few months he took him to the JD Ozuna academy, in Boca Chica.
There he did better in his presentation and in a few weeks Ozuna visited him in Guaymate, he met his parents and above all he saw the way the family lived, he promised them to help him in his development and turn him into a good player. That’s when, after many promises and reluctantly from his mother, he managed to take him to Boca Chica.
Already in this municipality and with 12 years of age began to prepare and with the passage of the weeks to develop skills that little by little they were becoming a prospect and to be won the affection of the broad family of baseball.
However, while he was in the baseball program he had his food secured, but the family shortage was felt, at one point the thieves tried to penetrate and rob in the house where only his sister was sick, later they were taken from the home, while in a short space, his grandparents Luis Pérez (father of Luisa) and Teresa Johnson (mother of Carlos) died, both provided part of the little help they received.
As a result of these events he made several proposals to his and his coach, among them figured to take a fortnightly purchase to the family with the condition of overcoming the goals that the program required and in this way they were giving things in a positive way until they formed already as a player wanted by many organizations.
The key to the family
“I am the key of my family, the person that I can take it forward,” he said again and again during leisure time. “God has to help me achieve my goals and be able to buy a house for my parents,” added Puasón.
Yesterday Puasón traveled to Lew Wolff, a complex in Mesa, Arizona, home of the A’s, where he hopes to continue his learning process. His flight took place in tranquility because unlike his house in poor condition, he left his family in a more comfortable home, about 4 million pesos in the residential Las Orquideas in this province, something that always dreamed and was acquired some days with part of the bonus obtained by the Athletics.
He represents a worthy example that when you want to achieve the goals you can.