Jesús Jovany Rodríguez Tlatempa
The police and the military were all involved in disappearing our children and taking them away. From that moment forward we know nothing, how they are, where they are, we know nothing…But from here we’re saying to the government that we will never stop searching for them.
- María Concepción Tlatempa Colchero
Jesus Jovany Rodriguez Tlatempa is the first child of María Concepción Rodríguez Tlatempa and Alfonso Rodríguez. When Jesus Jovany was a few months old, the family moved from their home in Tixtla, Guerrero to San Lorenzo Tezonco, Mexico City, when his father obtained a position with the Navy. They returned to Tixtla when Jesus Jovany was seven years old. During his adolescence Jesus Jovany, “Jova,” assumed the responsibilities of the house and became the main financial support when his parents divorced. He helped to look after his younger sister Itzayana, and younger brother Victor, and worked with his grandfather in the field after school every day and on Saturdays. They planted corn and flowers, and Jesus Jovany also worked as a bricklayer’s assistant. He purchased his own clothes, contributed to household expenses, and enjoyed taking his family out to dinner. "I do not like to be given anything, I like to earn things," he said when he was a teenager.
Jesus Jovany briefly studied medicine at the Universidad Autónoma Latinoamericana Caribeña de Ciencias y Artes, based in Atliaca, Guerrero but ultimately decided that in order to continue to support his family, it was best for him to find a school that did not impose a financial burden. With that idea, he entered the Ayotzinapa Normal, where he would have a place to sleep, be professionally prepared for the future, and would be close to his family. He is a father figure to the niece he adores, Danna Michell, the daughter of his sister Itzayana, who is a single mother.
Relatives, colleagues and teachers describe Jesus Jovany as noble, punctual, committed to work, outspoken against the mistreatment of women, and as someone who encourages his peers when he sees them stumble on their own path.