14ymedio, Havana, 21 March 2023 — Cuban photojournalist Héctor Darío Reyes, who collaborated with 14ymedio at its beginning, was found dead in his home in Mexico, according to his friends on social networks. The version that circulates among his acquaintances is that he was killed by some strangers whom he had invited to his house and who stole his phone and computer. The killers are allegedly on the run.
Reyes, originally from Santa Clara, studied journalism at the Faculty of Communication of Havana and took his first steps in the official press, working at the Cuban News Agency and the Villa Clara newspaper Vanguardia.
At the end of 2014 he began a series of collaborations with 14ymedio, expressing his passion for photography with photos of the deplorable condition of the streets in Camagüey, and another series on the Island’s satellite dishes. Among his articles published by this newspaper are some that reveal the stormy life and personality of the author, who is remembered by his friends.
Reyes was a great traveler and lived almost like a nomad in many countries, passing through Spain, Russia, China, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand, where he said he had arrived by swimming across a river. In 2015, Reyes left Cuba and lived in different Latin American countries, from Ecuador to the jungle of Peru and Mexico.
In an interview in 2019, he declared his love for this lifestyle. “There is still a long way to go, to photograph and write about,” he said, adding that he preferred to go on his way “without credits or a fixed salary. With my tent and my backpack in search of other frontiers, like a Cuban whose profession is to be a backpacker.”
His body was found by his partner and buried in Mexico, apparently in a mass grave.
“He was a great friend; I was talking to him two days before that tragedy happened,” wrote the Cuban poet Ibis Martín. “We had a joint project, which will come to light one day. I will do as much as I can to make it happen. He was very good as a poet, not to mention his chronicles. I just hope that those murderers are found and pay for what they have done. Wherever he is, may he rest in peace and know that I loved him, because with me he was always super kind and respectful.”
Translated by Regina Anavy
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