Archive

  • Missing in Peru

    Paralyzed for more than a decade by a conflict between the shining path and the military during the 80’s and 90’s, peru’s peasant communities have found a slow road back to recovery, with few answers about the fate of their missing loved ones. With tens of thousands killed, so far the remains that have been found and restituted to the families are estimated at 1,300 out of a universe of nearly 16,000 people in the whole country. In late october of last year, a ceremony took place in the andean highlands as family members of the disappeared came from varying provinces around ayacucho to collect the remains of their loved ones. 85 white coffins lined the courtyard of the legal medicine institute of ayacucho and were then carried on the backs of family members and volunteers through the main square in ayacucho. Families, some of whom had traveled for 24 hours by van and in some cases by mule, were escorted back home to give their loved ones a proper burial. In the village of huancasancos, where the conflict had hit hard, 12 victims were eulogized. Children were orphaned, women left to raise fatherless families, and babies wrongfully killed.

  • October 2014-Ayacucho, Peru: An event to honor the disapeared on the Day of the Dead, in Ayacucho.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: A panaramic view of the streets of Huancasancos.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: Libia tends to her fields just outside of Huancasancos. Lybia, 63 raised her 5 children as a single mom after her husband was killed 30 years ago. Both spouses were working as shoemakers in Hunacasancos and Libia had travelled to Lima with one of the children in order to buy some material for their shop. On the night of June 23rd, a group of men entered their home and shot her husband in front of the four children. She had no money to support them afterward, so they went to Lima to stay with relatives, living separately, studying and trying to find a better life. Libia supported them all cleaning houses until they were a bit older and she was able to return home and work on her family’s farm, in which she still rises at dawn to tend even though she is into her 60’s. Her biggest regret was the loss of her life’s love and for this she never remarried.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: A military helicopter alegedly shot down during the conflict in the early 1990's.
  • October 2014-Ayacucho, Peru: The Museum of Remembrance.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: Alejandrina with her husband in front of the school in Huancasancos. On June 23, 1983, at 1 in the morning Alejandrina was resting in her room breastfeeding her three month old baby, Alcira, when a group of men broke into her home and shot at her, killing her baby and injuring her severely. Bullet fragments were removed one by one leaving internal injuries, and until this day she remains crippled, walking with a cane. Although it is perhaps the psychological scars of loosing her young child in such a traumatic way that has plagued her all these years.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: Two horses wait patiently for their owner on the streets of Huancasancos.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: Alejandrina prepares a meal in her modest home in Huancasancos. On June 23, 1983, at 1 in the morning Alejandrina was resting in her room breastfeeding her three month old baby, Alcira, when a group of men broke into her home and shot at her, killing her baby and injuring her severely. Bullet fragments were removed one by one leaving internal injuries, and until this day she remains crippled, walking with a cane. Although it is perhaps the psychological scars of loosing her young child in such a traumatic way that has plagued her all these years.
  • October 2014-Ayacucho, Peru: On October 27 2014, after almost 30 years of waiting, the families of 80 people unaccounted for between 1983 and 1984 came from different regions of the country, to retrieve the remains of their loved ones at the Legal Medicine Institute of Ayacucho. The victims who were from various communities of Ayacucho such as Chungui, Huancasancos, Huanta, Vilcashuamán, Tambo, Canayre, and Huamanga were exhumed and identified during 2014.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: Vigil and burial ceremonies for the victims of the conflict who's remains were finally restituted after 30 years of dissapearance.
  • October 2014-Ayacucho, Peru: Coffins are carried through the streets by victims family members and volunteers in Ayacucho. On October 27 2014, after almost 30 years of waiting, the families of 80 people unaccounted for between 1983 and 1984 came from different regions of the country, to retrieve the remains of their loved ones at the Legal Medicine Institute of Ayacucho. The victims who were from various communities of Ayacucho such as Chungui, Huancasancos, Huanta, Vilcashuamán, Tambo, Canayre, and Huamanga were exhumed and identified during 2014.
  • October 2014-Ayacucho, Peru: Traditional dancers on the square in Ayacucho.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: One of the Salcedo twins blows smoke into his father's cranium as a sign of respect for a last smoke during a family vigil in the house in which his father Felix was murdered, along with their mother Olga. Edma, 49, and Nilton, 46 lost both their parents during the conflict. Only adolescents at the time, they were forced into raising their 5 brothers and sisters. When their father, who was a judge was killed, the two had been living in Ica. They were smuggled outside of Huancasancos in fruit baskets during the violence by their parents, for fear that they might be killed. After receiving word of their father’s death, they returned to be with the family and 6 months later found themselves orphaned after their mother was then executed. The children all suffer from the emotional scars of losing their parents as well as struggling economically. They also must face the perpetrators of their parents crime on a regular basis as they live within their own community.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: A woman pays tribute to the bodies of Olga and Felix Salcedo at a house vigil in the abandoned house where the two were murdered. Edma, 49, and Nilton , 46 lost both their parents during the conflict. Only adolescents at the time, they were forced into raising their 5 brothers and sisters. When their father, who was a judge was killed, the two had been living in Ica. They were smuggled outside of Huancasancos in fruit baskets during the violence by their parents, for fear that they might be killed. After receiving word of their father’s death, they returned to be with the family and 6 months later found themselves orphaned after their mother was then executed. The children all suffer from the emotional scars of losing their parents as well as struggling economically. They also must face the perpetrators of their parents crime on a regular basis as they live within their own community.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: Vigil and burial ceremonies for the victims of the conflict who's remains were finally restituted after 30 years of dissapearance.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: Olga Salcedo's shoes that she was wearing when murdered. They were restituted to her family along with her remains. Edma, 49, and Nilton , 46 lost both their parents during the conflict. Only adolescents at the time, they were forced into raising their 5 brothers and sisters. When their father, who was a judge was killed, the two had been living in Ica. They were smuggled outside of Huancasancos in fruit baskets during the violence by their parents, for fear that they might be killed. After receiving word of their father’s death, they returned to be with the family and 6 months later found themselves orphaned after their mother was then executed. The children all suffer from the emotional scars of losing their parents as well as struggling economically. They also must face the perpetrators of their parents crime on a regular basis as they live within their own community.
  • October 2014-Huancasancos, Peru: Libia's children who have traveled from as far as Lima participate in his funeral at a mass burial in Huancasancos. Lybia, 63 raised her 5 children as a single mom after her husband was killed 30 years ago. Both spouses were working as shoemakers in Hunacasancos and Libia had travelled to Lima with one of the children in order to buy some material for their shop. On the night of June 23rd, a group of men entered their home and shot her husband in front of the four children. She had no money to support them afterward, so they went to Lima to stay with relatives, living separately, studying and trying to find a better life. Libia supported them all cleaning houses until they were a bit older and she was able to return home and work on her family’s farm, in which she still rises at dawn to tend even though she is into her 60’s. Her biggest regret was the loss of her life’s love and for this she never remarried.
  • October 2014-Ayacucho, Peru: People celebrate the Day of the Dead and honor their loved ones at the central cemetery in Ayacucho.
  • October 2014-Ayacucho, Peru: An event to honor the disapeared on the Day of the Dead, in Ayacucho.
  • October 2014-Ayacucho, Peru: La Hoyada, on the outskirts of Ayacucho, where hundreds of bodies were unearthed from the conflict of the 80's and 90's.