Gerardo Hernández Nordelo was born in Havana City on 4 June 1965, in the bosom of a humble family. He was the third and youngest son of the marriage between Gerardo Hernández Martí and Carmen Nordelo Tejera —both already diseased—.
From an early age, he was admired for his good manners and stood out for the way he cared for, treated, helped and respected the elderly. He was also characterized by being a very active, studious and diligent boy.
He received his primary education at Cesáreo Fernández School in Arroyo Naranjo municipality. In that same municipality of the capital, he pursued the seventh and eighth grade education at Carlos E. Díaz Camacho Secondary School, obtaining outstanding academic results.
He continued his ninth grade studies at Máximo Gómez Secondary School, where he took on different responsibilities and was among the top students at the end of the academic year.
He began his high school education en 1980 and held different responsibilities within the Federation of Middle-Level Students. He was chosen delegate to the municipal plenary meeting of the organization and in 1980, he was granted the status of aspirant to the Young Communist League.
In eleventh grade, he joined the ranks of the Young Communist League and, in twelfth grade, was appointed Secretary General of the grass-root committee he was a member of.
He pursued his university studies (1983 -1989), at Raúl Roa García Higher Institute of International Relations. During that period, he was a member of the Young Communist League Committee of the Institute and excelled for his participation in amateur festivals of the Federation of University Students as part of a theater group and as a cartoonist-humorist. He was characterized by being an enthusiastic and creative student.
In 1988, he married his present wife, Adriana Pérez O’Connor, a chemical engineer and a member of the Cuban Communist Party. She has always been an invaluable support for Gerardo given her understanding and empathy with his job.
Gerardo went on an internationalist mission in the People’s Republic of Angola in 1989, where he stood out for his bravery and decisiveness in 54 combat missions.
In 1990, upon termination of his mission, he was decorated with the Internationalist Combatant Medal and with the Medal of Friendship between Cuba and the People’s Republic of Angola.
In 1993, he was granted membership into the Cuban Communist Party.
In the mid 1990s, he was accomplishing missions in the United States aimed at warning Cuba of the terrorist-related actions, planned and carried out by counterrevolutionary organizations based in Miami. In that country, he worked as a graphic artist. He was respected by his neighbors, friends and by the persons who new him, given his excellent social behavior.
Gerardo is characterized by having a high human sensitivity towards all persons, a sense of humor that is reflected in his drawings and comic cartoon stories and by his capacity to clearly express his ideas, all of which make him a beloved and admired person by all those around him.
In 1997, he was elected, in his absence, an honor delegate to the XIV World Festival of Youth and Students held in Cuba.
His mother, Carmen Nordelo Tejera, was born in the Canary Islands, Spain, on 15 February 1933. She migrated to Cuba in 1950. She passed away on 3 November 2009. She professed an extraordinary love for Gerardo and always felt proud of the high humane and revolutionary qualities of her son.
Gerardo has two sisters: Isabel Hernández Nordelo and María del Carmen Hernández Nordelo, the latter passed away on February 1998, in an aircraft accident along with other directives of the José Martí Military and Technical Institute. In view of this event, which deeply marked Gerardo, and even when conditions were created for Gerardo to travel from the United States to Cuba to attend the burial, he decided to continue accomplishing his important missions as a posthumous homage to his sister.