MEXICO CITY – For many Mexicans, Maria Santos Gorrostieta, was a true heroin, not afraid to die for the cause she believed in: free Mexico from gang violence.
NDJ World | Published: Nov 27 2012 South America→World News
Beaten and being shot at twice didn’t stop Maria, the mayor of Tiquicheo, a town of west of Mexico City, from speaking out and taking an aggressive stand against Mexico’s drug cartels.
She rallied against the mighty drug lords and inspired everyone to no longer tolerate their presence and their violence. For many Mexicans, Maria Santos was a true heroin, willing to give her life for the betterment of many.
For that’s what she did. In broad daylight, Maria was trapped by several vehicles while taking her daughter to school.
She pleaded with her attackers to save her daughter’s life and according to eyewitnesses that’s why she did not resist and stepped freely into one of the vehicles.
Eight days later Maria’s body was found badly tortured, with multiple gunshot wounds, along a roadside. She was tied by wrists and ankles, had cigarette burn marks and was carved with a knife.
The drug cartel did spare her daughter’s life as well the lives of her two sons and her husband.
Almost immediately after becoming mayor of the small town, Gorrostieta received death threats from drug gangs. They first tried killing her in 2009 when they blasted the vehicle she was driving with a hail of bullets.
Maria survived that attack, her first husband was killed in the gunfire.
Just 3 months later, the minivan Maria was riding in was sifted by 30 bullets, shot from guns by men wearing masks. 3 bullets penetrated Maria. Since then she wore a ‘stoma’ and would not know a single day without pain.
Even that did not stop Maria’s relentless pursuit to rid her town of gangs. ‘Quitting’ was not part of Maria’s vocabulary.
Days before being abducted, tortured and executed, Maria made gave this speech:
“At another point in my life I probably would give up the battle, but that’s not possible now. I have three children for whom I must be a good example. And I am doing this for my deceased husband. The father of my three kids, the man who taught me how to fight for a worthy cause.
Every day I see those horror images. I show everyone my mutilated body because I am not ashamed. I have a responsibility towards my people. I haven’t reached my goal yet.”
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