• Catarina Mauricio grieves for her husband and two daughters. Lucas Mauricio Guillen, his wife, Catarina, and their two daughters, Angelina and Eulalia – just 3 and 5 years old – fled their home in 1982. They ran into a military patrol and were fired upon: their two daughters were killed instantly and Lucas was seriously injured. Catarina and her husband managed to get across the border to Mexico, but Lucas sadly died from his injuries three days later.
    • Catarina Mauricio grieves for her husband and two daughters.

      Lucas Mauricio Guillen, his wife, Catarina, and their two daughters, Angelina and Eulalia – just 3 and 5 years old – fled their home in 1982. They ran into a military patrol and were fired upon: their two daughters were killed instantly and Lucas was seriously injured. Catarina and her husband managed to get across the border to Mexico, but Lucas sadly died from his injuries three days later.
      © ICRC/ D. Hernández-Salazar
  • Catarina and five others whose loved ones’ remains were found listen as the transfer-of-remains certificate is read out.
    • Catarina and five others whose loved ones’ remains were found listen as the transfer-of-remains certificate is read out.

      The transfer-of-remains certificate formalizes the handover of the clothes, personal effects and remains of 17 people who could not be individually identified. It also states that the case is closed, meaning that relatives now know the names of everyone who was killed in Yaltoya, Yalambojoch.
      © ICRC / D. Hernández-Salazar
  • Families gather round the remains to pray for the deceased and remember them.
  • Relatives decorate the altar with candles and flowers before celebrating mass.
  • A funeral procession from the main square to the cemetery. The relatives carry the remains to the local cemetery after a night-long funeral wake praying for the deceased to rest in peace.
  • The procession entering the cemetery. A mausoleum has been built especially to hold the remains of the deceased. Although it is a sad occasion, many relatives feel a sense of peace now that they have been able to hold a funeral ceremony for their loved ones in keeping with their culture and traditions.
  • An ICRC delegate saying a few words at the funeral service. Since 2003, the ICRC mission in Guatemala has been helping relatives to trace their missing loved ones, as well as helping to identify the dead, organize funeral services and offer bereavement counselling.
  • The ceremony brings to a close a difficult and painful chapter in the history of the community of Yalambojoch. The next generation will face the challenges of the future with confidence, while never forgetting those who died in the armed conflict of the past.

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