“My old man always told me he wanted to take me to Disney but he couldn’t. Then I tried with him and I didn’t succeed either. We had this account pending. My dream was to bring him to the United States, so he could walk around, but that didn’t happen to me, he started to get sick, his health got complicated until he died,” he said. remembers Román Martínez (43), with deep sadness. son of Adrian “Facha” Martel, who in the newspapers was called Pedro Julio César Martínez. The story of this man is also that of the son of a figure in Argentinian show business, with all that that implies: paparazzirumors and stories produced fame make up his range of life, a life he twisted to his taste and whim, away from it all.
Roman explains to THE NATION went to live in Miami in 2010 with Jennifer, his partner at the time, and his only son, Tomás, now 18, a bit of a coincidence: “It was like that. Almost unwittingly, I started coming to the United States as a hobby. Then I met people, continued to travel more often, and it turned out that my wife was an American citizen. I had met her in Argentina, but I did not know that she had the citizenship of her grandparents. One day she revealed to me that she wanted to come live, we got married here in Miami, I became an American citizen and Now I have an Argentinian son and an American son.”.
He also says that it still hurts him that he was unable to bring his father to the United States: “I was very angry that I could not bring him, I still feel anxious. But we got to hardly here and for a long time we lived in the house of my wife’s grandmother, he could not visit me, he was not settled yet, moreover, he did not have a visa, everything had to be treated and he was not in conditions. In 2013, the year of his deathI went there three times in a row, the last time when I was told he was dead. When I more or less settled down, he leaves us in February of this year“, he describes moved.
“With drugs, I removed years from my life”, Román says that his father came to confide in him already in a very bad state of health: “But the truth is that I never saw him use drugs, I noticed his tics. He didn’t like people putting their hands in his pocket, he got angry, I guess it was because he always had something in there, what do I know. Over time, things started to close in on me. He was very careful. When I was little, we talked about cocaine. He told me the problem was getting out, that’s why he insisted that I never come in, because you may look very cool, but you end tragically almost every time. He repeated that having a very high self-esteem is the best barrier to drugs”.
The memory of Román brings him back to his favorite years, those of his childhood: “He was an excellent father for me even if he was not present on a daily basis. I tell you more, I never saw my parents together, they separated when I was very young. I always waited for the weekends to go to his house when I was 8 or 9 years old. Over the seasons, I went on vacation and I accompanied him”. However, He cuts the story to talk about a pivotal event for entertainment: the feminicide of Alicia Muñiz. “When Carlos Monzón killed Alicia Muñiz in Mar del Plata I was in the next room, because my father had invited them to the house. Monzón lived with us, he was a guest. He said he wanted to reconcile, but it all ended very badly. Then it all got mixed up, they cured my dad Trader when I was a consumer,” he recalls.
The question is inevitable: how did you experience this night of the feminicide and what memories did you keep of it? “Did I suffer any trauma that night early in the morning? Not really, luckily I didn’t see Alicia’s body, I saw things that stood out to me when we went down to the garage and I looked: there was a broken pot, a lot of glass earth, many police inside the house. That night I didn’t wake up, didn’t feel a noise or anything. The next day, my old man wakes me up at seven in the morning and tells me that I have to leave. The house was full of police, the worst was over,” he says.
Even though he was a boy, Roman has Monzón very much in his mind. “He was half mad, one day he gave me an ivory blade which when you opened it became gigantic. My old man said to me: ‘Don’t pay attention to the one who is crazy’. I listened to Monzón who said to me: “Listen, kid, if the police ever arrest you, you pin them down. I never knew if he said it in a joke or if he took it. I was nine years old and my father insisted: “Don’t do anything that Carlos tells you, he’s crazy”. He never shut me down, so I was suspicious of him.
Of course, this was not the only tragic event that Román experienced that summer of 1988. Another death was added to the crime committed by the boxer: Negro Olmedo had fallen from the 12th floor of Maral 39 in Mar del Plata.
“To make matters worse, soon after my father told me of the death of Negro Olmedo, I understood nothing, one misfortune after another. When Alberto died, we were also in this house. I still remember him, he was a serious guy on a daily basis, he made jokes but nothing more. I liked them all, very good people. I loved being with them. I was looking forward to the summer to see them. Olmedo was divine, we always went out to eat with him”, he underlines with a hint of nostalgia.
At the end of the summer season, father and son returned to Buenos Aires: “I always lived with my mother, but on the weekends I visited her. He lived in Libertador and La Pampa, he was very friendly, we went out to buy chocolates. He never left me aside to see women. If he met a girl, he let her know that I was at her house. And since he always had a different one and he had just met me, he treated me well, hahaha. In addition, everything I asked him, he bought me, especially computer stuff. I remember we ate with the famous in the Roaring Twenties. Once he said to me: “The only thing I will leave you in life as a legacy is free entry to the bowling alleys because I know all the owners””.
His father’s bad times were not long in coming and that’s how Román lived it, already in the United States, with the family he was forming: “I traveled every year to see him, but it wasn’t was not the same. The subject of drug addiction has always been a courageous issue. He was always very aware that he couldn’t get out. He was very loved, he had a lot of code, the addiction was his pain, and the death of Negro Olmedo also because he abruptly abandoned the question of work. That’s why I never liked to follow his career.”
As expected, Román was asked to shoot movies but he realized that was not his calling. “But it looked like a masking total. When you go public, nothing is the same. Because if you lose your acting job and they see you driving a taxi or a van, they call you a failure. And you don’t get up again,” he said. Different was the route of “El Facha”. “He worked in a circus so he could eat, he did everything. Hugo Sofovich and Adrián Suar gave him a hand, not continuously, but from time to time they gave him work. But when you sink at work and in addition you have an addiction, you fall back, it’s inexorable. Guillermo Marín, from El Corralón, helped him a lot, he’s a guy, also Jacobo Winograd, who took him to live with him, behaved very well. There are many actors that the guild has abandoned, some end up in the House of the theater and others abandoned to their fate”, he depicts.
As he recounts his gift, his father’s story comes and goes: “In Miami, I’m real estate agent, Real estate agent. For those who want to buy or rent, I search for properties, I advise them, I upload them to a supply and demand network. My wife Jennifer takes care of the boys, Benjamín, 6, and Tomás, 18, who told me the other day “I think I want to be an actor”. He worked at the Four Seasons as a waiter, they paid him a fortune, but I want him to study. He met my old man, he was very young, he doesn’t have many memories, but from somewhere he touched on the subject of acting. He has something of my father, his personality from when he was well. He’s a good person like my old man, it’s fundamental“, he describes.
“You know? When I needed it, my old man would always run away,” Román says, adding, “If I hadn’t consumed it, I would have it here with me, it’s a shame it hurts. still hurt. But I’m like that, I thought about the future of my children when I arrived here, although I will never stop being an immigrant. I first worked in electricity, then as a building manager, in the building, I drove an UberI did everything. As I have been working for 15 years, it is the legacy left to me by my old man, that you always have to row, against all odds”.