Remembering Two Members of the GAP:
Rudy Carcamo and Hector Lepe



At the moment of the military coup, Eduardo A. Cruz Farias, originally from Concepcion, was a sociology student at the University of Concepcion. In May 1976 he was arrested in Mendoza, Argentina in the context of Operation Condor with fellow members of the MIR, shot, and then left to die in a park. He survived and UNHCR arranged for his departure as political refugee to Vancouver, Canada where he lives with his family. He offers the following remembrance of his friends of the MIR, Hector Lepe and Rudy Carcamo.

"And then all who are inscribed in Book of Life shall be saved. Many who sleep in the dust shall awaken; some to eternal life, other to perpetual infamy. The just shall shine with the brilliance of the sky. Those who taught justice shall shine like stars for eternity." (Book of Daniel, 12.1-3)

This brief tribute is dedicated to two members of the GAP (Group of Personal Friends) who served as personal bodyguards for President Salvador Allende). Rudy Carcamo Ruiz worked at Soco Agro in Concepcion, and was a mechanical designer as well as skindiver. Hector Manuel Lepe Moraga was 29 years old and a student at State Technical University, also in Concepcion. At that time we were in compartmental units of the MIR. Everything was quite formal and we had no time for anything besides our political functions.

I knew Hector only as Rojitas. No one was interested in knowing more than was absolutely necessary about each other. He was tall, muscular and I remember a characteristic gesture of his: he would incline his head to one side while looking at you. He inspired respect at a glance and was well-known in the party. The way he related to other people invoked trust; and that was a very important quality, considering that we were in training in those days. Rojitas was a great walker, and he never complained about anything; not even the food or the exercise. He was hardened and intelligent. Much later, in late 1970, I came across a photograph in "Vea" magazine in which he appeared as one of Allende's personal escorts. I did not see him again after the coup.

Rudy was of medium height, but muscular as well. His slanted eyes earned him the nickname "Vietnam." His hands and feet were large. He said that was so he could swim better, because he loved the water. Aside from our common political functions, he was close to all my family. This did not mean, however, that I knew everything he was engaged in. I only knew about some of his activities. After the coup we were even stricter in this regard. He would come and go from my house as he pleased, as did his wife Lilian and their son Erick, who my brothers and sisters were very fond of. That is why his disappearance was so hard on my family. After the coup Rudy reminded his family and friends that if the military made him disappear, we should obtain his dental records from Cuba to enable identification. He wanted to lie in sacred grounds alongside his family. During our last contact, before his arrest, I insisted that he leave the area temporarily for security reasons. He replied: "Even if I become the last remaining Mirista, I will stay here and fight these military s-o-bs." (

Rudy entered the GAP in late 1970. He was trained to be a body guard for Salvador Allende, who trained along with them. Allende was quite athletic for his age, considering that the young fellows in the GAP were between 20 and 28 years old. That impressed the guards, who were delighted to train with compañero Allende or the "Doctor", as he was affectionately called. The President also liked to train in target practice and participate in combat exercises when time permitted. Almost all the first GAP members were Miristas. Later they were all Socialists, and to them fell the glory of defending President Allende in La Moneda that terrible day of September 11, 1973. Rudy served at the presidential residence of Tomas Moro, as did all the bodyguards when Allende took office. Allende's escorts were fewer in number when he was still a presidential candidate. The first members of the GAP, according to Rudy , were Joel Marambio and Humberto Sotomayor. Rudy also served as escort to Fidel Castro during his official visit to Chile in late 1971.

Both Rudy and Hector worked in shantytowns and with workers up to the time of the coup. Rudy worked in shantytown Lenin and the petrochemical sector between Huachipato and Enap, while Hector worked in Bellavista, Tome. In retrospect, it seems to me that it was a mistake for the party to have exposed its most valuable members in semipublic work. After the coup they had trouble going underground. They were arrested very soon.

Rudy Carcamo was arrested as part of a big roundup at the time Miguel Enriquez was killed in Santiago. The military learned the names of regional contacts of the MIR, leading to the arrest of a great number of members in Concepcion, including Jose "Pepone" Carrasco Tapia. The arrest of Rudy Carcamo occurred after another former GAP member described him in late October 1974. This facilitated an intense search for him during more than a month, culminating with his arrest on November 27, 1974 by Talcahuano Naval intelligence personnel. Rudy was first imprisoned on the Naval Base and tortured at Fuerte Borgoño el Morro. Then he was imprisoned on Quiriquina Island October 1973 until July 1974 , at which time he was tried by theTalcahuano Naval Court. The case was dismissed and he was released. We know that after his release, he rejoined party activities until his final arrest on November 27, 1974 when he disappeared forever. When he was released from Quiriquina Island, he told me that Naval Intelligence was unaware of his work with the GAP and trips to y Cuba, which meant that so far no one had talked under torture. That is significant and demonstrates the integrity, loyalty and courage of those compañeros.

Carabineros police arrested Hector Lepe on September 27, 1973 on a tip from an informant. He was tortured at the Fuerte Borgoño and El Morro in the Naval Base along with Ricardo Barra Martinez, who later died in torture. A War Council held on October 6, 1973 (rol Ancla-1) sentenced them to prison.

According to a former Quiriquina Island prisoner, Agustin Costa, all the prisoners in the Naval Base gave them a hearty farewell that October 9, 1973 in the belief that finally the torture would stop and they would be taken to Concepcion Public Prison. They were in deplorable physical condition from torture but their political beliefs were intact. Even today Costa is moved when he remembers them. All the political prisoners thought that some foreign country would give refuge to the three of them: Transito del Carmen Cabrera Ortiz, Miguel Angel Catalan Febrero and Hector Manuel Lepe Moraga. However, the three members of the MIR were executed by a Navy military patrol at a place called Paso Hondo near the city of Tome. The details of the execution are still not clear. Every October 9 flowers are placed at the small monolith that was erected there.

In the area of Hualpen, near the mouth of the Bio-Bio River, a search is underway for Rudy Carcamo's remains. The excavations are approximately 300 meters from main entrance to the Hualpen Museum in a small woods. Five members of theNavy are suspects in his death. Carcamo's son Erick Carcamo Alegria has learned that after the military savagely tortured him to death, they buried him and planted a tree over the grave in order to make his remains disappear.

Hector Lepe is an executed political prisoner, while Rudy Carcamo remains disappeared. On March 29, 2001 relatives, friends and former members of the MIR filed a criminal complaint against en Augusto Pinochet Ugarte and others for various crimes, before Santiago Appeals Court Judge Juan Guzman Tapia, in case (Rol) 2182-98. The lawsuit is represented by attorneys Hiram Villagra Castro, Alejandra Arriaza Donoso, Fernando Zegers Ramirez and Alberto Espinosa Pino. The trial underway in the First Criminal Court of Talcahuano for Rudy Carcamo is joined to the case investigated by e Judge Guzman.

The GAP were simple, modest men and loyal party members who were chosen to serve the most trustworthy of jobs: guarding the President of Chile Salvador Allende. Their names, identities, desires and utopias are veiled by a screen of historic amnesia. They dreamed of social justice for the poorest of the countryside and the city. They gave their all to build a better world.

We must remove them from under the shadow of oblivion, remove the dust from the files, and clandestine cementeries to reclaim their names. Their physical deaths do not mean they have left us. They are only sleeping in clandestine graves or at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. The government elite and the military pursue impunity for such terrible crimes against humanity. But these officials have been unsuccessful in erasing their identities from the Book of Life, for their memory lives in the collective memory of the Chilean people.


1) Acuña Alvarez Carlos Patricio, Executed 13/10/73
2) Aguirre Vasquez Antonio, Disappeared 2/10/73
3) Alarcon Jara Eduardo Enrique, Disppeared 30/7/74
4) Araya Figueroa Fredy Alex, Executed in Tocopilla 4/10/73. Known as Ernesto.
5) Aviles Jofre Oscar, Executed 22/10/73
6) Blanco Tarres Domingo Bartolome, Disappeared 11/9/73 Known as Bruno.
7) Bravo Alvarez Fidel Alfonso, Executed 11/9/73
8) Carcamo Ruiz Rudy, Disappeared in Talcahuano, Concepcion, 27/11/74. Known as Vietnam.
9) Carreño Calderon Jose Belisario, Executed 19/9/73
10) Castro Zamorano Manuel Ramon, Disappeared 11/9/73
11) Chacon Hormazabal Julio, Disappeared. 27/9/73
12) Contreras Carrasco Exequel Segundo, Executed 5/10/73
13) Cruz Zavalla Carlos Alfonso, Executed 19/9/73
14) Delgado Marin Oscar Jesus, Executed 5/10/73 Incinerated
15) Espinoza Gonzalez Luis Alfredo, Disappeared 10/12/78
16) Freire Medina Jose, Disappeared 11/9/73
17) Gamboa Pizarro Luis Alfredo, Executed 19/9/73
18) Garces Portigliati Pedro Juan Disappeared 11/9/73
19) Gonzalez De Asis Guillermo, Disappeared 12/9/75
20) Gutierrez Ayala Daniel Antonio, Disappeared 11/9/73 His remains were found. Known as Jano.
21) Huerta Corvalan Enrique Lelio, Disappeared 11/9/73
22) Jorquera Leyton Gonzalo Mario Executed 20/9/73.
23) Lagos Rios Oscar Reinaldo, Disappeared 11/9/73
24) Lara Ruiz Francisco Urcisinio, Executed 5/10/73
25) Lazo Lazo Ofelio De La Cruz, Disappeared 30/7//74
26) Lepe Moraga Hector Manuel, Executed 9/10/73 at Paso Hondo. Known as Rojitas.
27) Manriquez Diaz Miguel Hernan, Executed in Antofagasta by Caravan of Muerte19/10/73. Known as Javier.
28) Marambio Araya Oscar Osvaldo Executed 19/9/73
29) Maureira Vasquez Mario Osvaldo, Disappeared 8/8/76
30) Montero Salazar Edmundo Enrique Executed 19/9/73 Sep.2696-1
31) Montiglio Murua Juan Jose Disappeared 11/9/73
32) Moreno Pulgar Julio Hernan Disappeared 11/9/73
33) Ojeda Disselkoen Eduardo Manuel Executed 12/9/73
34) Orrego Gonzalez Jorge Osvaldo Disappeared 11/9/73 Identified
35) Pacheco Monsalve Javier Antonio Executed 6/10/73 Identif ied
36) Ramirez Barria William Osvaldo. Disappeared 11/9/73
37) Ramos Rivera Osvaldo Del Carmen Disappeared 28/9/73
38) Rodriguez Riquelme Luis Fernando Disappeared 11/9/73
39) Salinas Muñoz Wagner Herid Executed 5/10/73 when was traveling to Santiago from the south. Known as Silvano.
40) Sotelo Ojeda Jaime Gilson Disappeared 11/9/73. Known as Carlos.
41) Tapia Martinez Julio Fernando Disappeared 11/9/73
42) Urrutia Molina Hector Daniel Disappeared 11/9/73
43) Valladares Caroca Oscar Enrique Disappeared 11/9/73. Known as Raul.
44) Vargas Contreras Juan Alejandro Disappeared 11/9/73
45) Vargas Fernandez Felix Marmaduke. Disappeared January 1974
46) Walker Arangua Joaquin, Disappeared 30/12/73

Never Will We Forget or Forgive!

Eduardo Agustin Cruz



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