Hemingway friend Castillo-Puche dies
2 February 2004
MADRID – Writer and journalist Jose Luis Castillo-Puche Moreno died Monday aged 84 in Madrid.
He had been fighting against pneumonia in hospital since 19 January.
Two-time winner of the National Literature Prize and four times candidate of the Spanish Academy, Castillo-Puche was a writer, journalist, university professor and great friend of Ernest Hemingway.
He wrote two books about his friend — “Hemingway Between Life and Death” and “Hemingway in Spain”.
He wrote his first novel in 1946, “Sin Camino”, (Without a Road) which was censored in Spain until 1963.
He had also published “Memorias íntimas de Aviraneta o Manual del Conspirador” (Intimate diary of a conspirator’s manual) in 1953 and “Misión a Estambul” (Misión to Istanbul) and Con la muerte al hombro” (Death looking over my shoulder) in 1954.
He published several novels and essays using the pen name Gracián Loaysa. He wrote for “Catolicismo y Signo” and collaborated in the Madrid newspapers ABC and Ya.
Castillo-Puche joined the Informaciones newspaper in 1967, and after writing an article that same year on official secrets, he had to move to New York, where he worked as a correspondent for Informaciones.
He was appointed president of the Editorial Nacional in 1980. In 1984, another writer, Julio Caro Baroja was chosen over him as member of the Spanish Academy.
But the same year, he was appointed honorary member of the Hemingway Society during the 1st international Hemingway Congress held in Madrid.
He was candidate to the Spanish Academy for the fourth and last time in 1987, competing against Antonio Mingote and Caballero Bonald.
Castillo-Puche also tried his hand at film-making, with a film script centred on Hemingway and a TV series, “Hemingway, fiesta y muerte”, (Death in a bullring) directed by José María Sánchez.
He was named Prodigal Son of his hometown Yecla, in Murcia in June 1991, from which he fled in the 50s.
He won several awards during his career, such as the 1953 Journalism Award, the 1955 Hispanic Culture Fine Arts Award, the 1957 Catholic Novel Laurel, the 1958 Miguel de Cervantes Spanish Literature Prize, the 1963 Spanish Literature and Fine Arts Award, the ABC’s 1963 Hispanic Journalism Fraternity Award and the 1982 Spanish Novel and Short Story Award for “Conocerás el poso de la nada”. (Behold a trace of nothingness)
In 1992, he received the Regional Gold Medal, and the 1st Literature Award for the Region of Murcia in 2001.
The first edition of the Castillo-Puche Short Story Award was held in 1994, an initiative of the Yecla town council. Last years’ winner was Francisco Javier Pérez Fernández for “Viento Divino” (Divine wind)
Castillo-Puche was named honourable member of the Murcia Press Society, and proclaimed himself “an atypical, insurgent, solitary traveller, subdued at times, by silence”.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news