Frank Fiorini, better known as Frank Sturgis, had an interesting career that started when he quit high school during his senior year to join the United States Marine Corps as an enlisted man. During World War II he served in the Pacific Theater of Operations with Edson’s Raiders, of the First Marine Raiders Battalion under Colonel “Red Mike.” In 1945 at the end of World War II, he received an honorable discharge and the following year joined the Norfolk, Virginia Police Department. Getting involved in an altercation with his sergeant, he resigned and found employment as the manager of the local Havana-Madrid Tavern, known to have had a clientele consisting primarily of Cuban seamen. In 1947 while still working at the tavern, he joined the U.S. Navy’s Flight Program. A year later, he received an honorable discharge and joined the U.S. Army as an Intelligence Officer. Again, in 1949, he received an honorable discharge, this time from the U.S. Army. Then in 1957, he moved to Miami where he met former Cuban President Carlos Prío, following which he joined a Cuban group opposing the Cuban dictator Batista. After this, Frank Sturgis went to Cuba and set up a training camp in the Sierra Maestra Mountains, teaching guerrilla warfare to Castro’s forces. He was appointed a Captain in Castro’s M‑26‑7 Brigade, and as such, he made use of some CIA connections that he apparently had cultivated, to supply Castro with weapons and ammunition. After they entered Havana as victors of the revolution, Sturgis was appointed to a high security, intelligence position within the reorganized Cuban air force.
Strangely, Frank Sturgis returned to the United States after the Cuban Revolution, and mysteriously turned up as one of the Watergate burglars who were caught installing listening devices in the National Democratic Campaign offices. In 1973 Frank A. Sturgis, E. Howard Hunt, Eugenio R. Martínez, G. Gordon Liddy, Virgilio R. “Villo” González, Bernard L. Barker and James W. McCord, Jr. were convicted of conspiracy. While in prison, Sturgis feared for his life if anything he had done, regarding his associations and contacts, became public knowledge. In 1975, Sturgis admitted to being a spy, stating that he was involved in assassinations and plots to overthrow undisclosed foreign governments. However, at the Rockefeller Commission hearings in 1975, their concluding report stated that he was never a part of the CIA…. Go figure!
In 1979, Sturgis surfaced in Angola where he trained and helped the rebels fight the Cuban-supported communists. Following this, he went to Honduras to train the Contras in their fight against the communist-supported Sandinista government. He also met with Yasser Arafat in Tunis, following which he was debriefed by the CIA. Furthermore, it is documented that he met and talked to the Venezuelan terrorist Ilich Ramírez Sánchez, or Carlos the Jackal, who is now serving a life sentence for murdering two French counter intelligence agents. On December 4, 1993, Sturgis suddenly died of lung cancer at the Veterans Hospital in Miami, Florida. He was buried in an unmarked grave south of Miami…. Or was he? In this murky underworld, anything is possible.
Photo Caption: Frank Sturgis (visit Captain Hank Bracker Facebook Page.)
Captain Hank Bracker, who served with the U.S. Military Intelligence Corps, is the author of the multi-award winning book, “The Exciting Story of Cuba” has now written “Suppressed I Rise.” This book is for anyone interested in a very personal human view, of the history of World War II. A mother’s attempt to protect and raise her two young daughters in hostile NAZI Germany challenges her sensibilities and resourcefulness. Both books will be at the NYC Book Exhibit this summer between May 31st & June 2nd at the Jacob Javits Center, but are presently available at Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, BooksAMillion.com and many Independent Book Shops.