Everardo Rodríguez Bello
We have to take care of ourselves so that we are in good shape when our children return. So that when he returns, he sees that I am fine. I ask God to give us strength, and them too. Wherever they are, that he watches over and protects them.
- Minerva Bello Guerrero
Everardo is the fourth of seven siblings. His older sisters, María de Jesús and Elizabeth have already married, and live in Cuernavaca and Tixtla, respectively, with their husbands and children. He has an older brother, Raúl, younger brothers Luis Gustavo, Lucas Leonel and sister Esveidy Viridiana. The family lives in San Juan Omeapa, municipality of Tixtla, Guerrero.
Everardo is called Kalimba by his family; a nickname given to him because he resembles the Mexican singer. He is also know to be very talkative, a joker, and a prankster. His mother was often summoned to school because he had been naughty. At home he would tease his mother: “Ay, my beautiful mom. I’ll never find another one so beautiful.”
His parents, Minerva Bello Guerrero and Francisco Rodríguez Morales, married for more than 30 years, from a young age taught Everardo to take care of himself. During his childhood and adolescence he worked in the field and helped his mother with chores. He especially enjoys making the tortillas and his favorite green Chile sauce with onions.
Everardo is also a lover of animals, and one of his favorite activities of the day is riding his horse to collect firewood for cooking.
Everardo is passionate about soccer, and music. He started studying music at the age of ten. He learned to play the, the snare drum, trombone, saxophone, and was learning to play the guitar. Along with several cousins and brothers, he formed the San Juan Band of Omeapa. The musicians rehearsed daily and played at private events and parties in nearby towns. Even after he started school at Ayotzinapa, Everardo joined rehearsals on his days off.
After graduating high school Everardo took a year off from his studies to work with his father in construction of the community of La Esperanza. In 2014, he passed the exams to enter the Normal Rural School of Ayotzinapa with his best friend from San Juan Omeapa, Jhosivani Guerrero de la Cruz, who is also among the disappeared students. Everardo’s goal is to be a teacher, buy a little piece of land to build a home and to help his family so that his father does not have to work as hard as he does.
The last time Minerva Bello saw her son was at the Normal, after a meeting for parents, on September 20, 2014. He took her arm and asked “Mom, you miss me, right? Yes, I told you that you were going to miss me.” "How do they treat you, child?" She asked. "Good, boss. But do not call me child, I'm already big." "You're a child to me,” Minerva replied. And Everardo hugged her, lifting her off the ground. "You're crazy, kid," she said. He replied: ”I don’t know, it's that I really wanted to hug you.”
After the events in Iguala on September 26 and 27, 2014, Minerva Bello was one of the first to take to the streets to undertake the struggle for life, and for truth and justice. Two years after she began the search for her son, Minerva Bello was diagnosed with stomach cancer, and despite treatment continued to march in the pilgrimage for justice.
On February 4, 2018, Minerva Bello Guerrero died after a long and strenuous period of agony. She died full of dignity after more than three years of searching tirelessly for her son Everardo. Before her death, Minerva Bello asked her son Raúl to continue searching for his brother. “She told me to find him and hug him as hard as I could," says Raúl. Minerva’s husband, Francisco Rodríguez, will continue the search for his son. "Because it is a promise: I told Mine that I would find him, and I will fulfill it.”
In the summer of 2018 The Minerva Bello Center was founded in Chilpancingo, Guerrero by its current director, José Filiberto Velázquez Florencio, along with a number of experts, and local and national allied human rights organizations. The center specializes in providing assistance to victims of human rights violations and violent crimes such as forced disappearance, extrajudicial execution, homicide and femicide, and forced displacement.
The center adopted Minerva Bello’s name, with approval from her family, in tribute to her life, her great strength, commitment, and vigor to continue fighting for her son, and for truth and justice. Her testimony was a living example of what it means to love a child and be willing to fight until the last breath.