By Alicia Neaves
EL PASO - Parents of the 43 students from Guerrero, Mexico, who were killed in a massacre back in September, are speaking out in West Texas. They are pleading for solidarity between the U.S. and Mexico to help them find their children.
The Mexican government confirmed a gang confessed to the crime of ambushing the students' bus before shooting some and burning the remains. But the bodies are still nowhere to be found. That's the reason why some parents of the 43 students believe their sons are still alive.
"He isn't missing. He's detained. The government has him," mother of missing Ayotzinapa student, Jorge Alvarez Nava, said.
A caravan of Ayotzinapa, the school the 43 students attended, made its first stop in the United States. It's comprised of parents and family members of the missing.
"The government has done much harm. Since September 26, we've been living at the school. We are suffering and they are feeding us news that's nothing but lies," the mother said.
The mother of 19-year-old Jorge Alvarez Nava searched the site where her son was reportedly burned. Where they expected to find a charred, desolate area, it was still perfectly green, untouched. This adds to her belief that her son is still alive. Because if more than 40 bodies were burned, wouldn't there be any evidence?
"He had the drive to become a teacher. To move up in the world, to do something with his life. Look what happened. Because the government is so corrupt, that's why things are the way they are," she said.
Families of the missing were fed leads, like a group of 28 bodies found in Mexico, but none matched the identity of the students, who were targets after simply planning a peaceful protest.
The father of Miguel Antonio Mendoza Zacarias was a farmer and left all he had to join the caravan.
"[The government has] called me and offered me cars, money. They ask us to accept it but none of us have. Our children don't have a price," the father said.
The brother of a survivor of the massacre also shared his story.
"The Mexican Military was the one who took the students from the clinics where they were being helped. My brother was a survivor of this. He saw his friends being taken into trucks, he saw the blood on the bus. He hasn't been the same since," the brother said.
"If they kill me, another will go in my place to rally in the streets for justice," the father said.
The group of parents will present again Tuesday at the University of Texas at El Paso with a mass to follow.
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