Porfirio Rubirosa (Porfirio Rubirosa)

Porfirio Rubirosa

In 1931, Porfirio Rubirosa met Rafael Trujillo at a country club. The “Benefactor” asked to see him the next morning, and made him a lieutenant of his Presidential Guard. Their relationship lasted throughout their lives, went up and down, mostly close, but not without episodes of danger for Porfirio Rubirosa, and defined his professional career when he became a diplomat of the Dominican Republic in 1936. In this role, he was sent to embassies, first at Berlin (during the 1936 Olympic Games) and soon to Paris, where he spent most of his time; he also served at the embassies at Vichy, Buenos Aires, Rome, Havana (witnessing the Cuban Revolution), and Brussels. He was a frequent visitor to New York, Washington, Florida, and California. “Rubi”, who defined himself a Trujillista, moved freely among the rich and famous, made the connections, and kept the secrets. His 1938 divorce of Trujillo’s daughter seemed, at least on the surface, to have little influence over his erstwhile father-in-law’s affection for, or trust in, him. However, at times, when his escapades stirred up too much notoriety, Trujillo would dismiss him – as from his post in Paris in 1953 – or move him to another place. Trujillo recognized what an asset Rubirosa was for his regime, remarking: “He is good at his job, because women like him and he is a wonderful liar.”

After Trujillo’s assassination on May 30, 1961, Porfirio Rubirosa supported his son as successor and attempted to persuade John F. Kennedy to help his government. However, when Ramfis Trujillo and his family fled the Dominican Republic, Rubirosa’s career came to an end. On January 2, 1962, the Council of State removed him from his unique appointment as “Inspector of Embassies”. After he lost his diplomatic immunity, he was questioned by the New York District Attorney concerning the disappearance of Trujillo opponents Sergio Bencosme in 1935 and Jesus Galíndez in 1956, but was never charged. Porfirio Rubirosa entered one Formula One race, in 1955, the Grand Prix de Bordeaux on April 25. He planned to drive his own Ferrari 500, identical to the one which brought Alberto Ascari the 1952 and 1953 Drivers’ World Championship. However, he fell ill before the race and did not drive. Porfirio Rubirosa died in the early morning of July 5, 1965, at the age of 56, when he crashed his silver Ferrari 250 GT into a horse chestnut tree in the Bois de Boulogne after an all-night celebration at the Paris nightclub “Jimmy’s” in honor of winning the polo Coupe de France.

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Born

  • January, 22, 1909
  • San Francisco de Macorís, Dominican Republic

Died

  • July, 05, 1965
  • Paris, France

Cause of Death

  • car accident

Cemetery

  • Cimetière de Marnes la Coquette
  • Île-de-France, France

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