Álvaro Alberto Gómez Montalbán
“May our young people’s sacrifice never become a hollow slogan”
Murdered in Masaya on April 20, 2018
Álvaro Alberto Gómez was from the indigenous neighborhood of Monimbó, Masaya and was studying in the fourth- of a five-year undergraduate degree program in Banking and Finance at the Recinto Universitario Carlos Fonseca (RUCFA) of the UNAN-Managua. He attended classes on Saturdays and worked in a free-trade zone on weekdays.
His father, Álvaro Antonio Gómez, remembers him as being “…rebellious, like all youth at that age.” He was 23 years old and wanted to travel to Europe to attend an electronic music concert. He liked to play sports and in his free time, he played basketball at the Salesiano School. He was a Barcelona soccer fan. “He would look for places that had large screens to watch their games and didn’t miss any. He had many friends and many dreams,” his father relates.
The son of a long-time Sandinista militant, Alvaro lived in the Cuatro Esquinas sector of Monimbó and joined the local demonstrations against the social security (INSS) reforms from their onset. He saw on television how the elderly had been harassed and beaten, and the following day, April 20, he joined other young people protesting in Monimbó. The protesters got as far as the Central Park, where police and the Sandinista Youth mobs quashed the demonstrators. Just before midnight, while in the vicinity of the Craft Market, Álvaro was struck down by a bullet fired by the police.
Beaten and with his shirt torn, he was taken to the Humberto Alvarado Hospital in Masaya, but failed to make it there alive. The last image that don Álvaro saw of his son was on Facebook: it was a photo of his pellet-strewn legs that was captioned “The Guerrilla Fighter.”
His father wants his son to be remembered “…as exemplar by his neighborhood friends…that his sacrifice be remembered in the schools…that they remember him as a kid willing to fight for what he wanted… that the State never again shoot down kids, and that his name never become a hollow slogan. Honoring the memory of our youth is a way to get the country ahead…that there be an end to the corruption and that free elections be held.”
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