Anyway, the gist of my messages were asking -- no, demanding -- to know more about "Mat Master Manuel." All I can say is that his story is so amazing, you couldn't make it up! But, let me give it a shot...
Manuel Jose Ramone's infatuation with all things aquatic goes back to his mother and aunt, who were avant garde swimwear models in pre-Castro Cuba.
Both thrilled and ashamed by his family's erotic passion for the water, little Manuel became a defiant child who could not be dragged from the ocean without a fight!
As a young man he became a dare devil, willing to risk his life for the admiring glances of attractive foreign tourists...
Self aware beyond his years, Manuel realized he had an almost perverse fixation with swimwear models, so he dove into shark infested waters once again...this time headlong into fashion photography.
His first paying gig was shooting models on the beach with inflatable rafts in his new-found home of South Florida.
A good hearted soul, he soon became disgusted with the shallow nature of the fashion world. A close call with death after a dicey appendectomy added fuel to the fires of his discontent...and, no surprise, he became very religious.
Not one to do things halfway, Manny really got into it!