“1 ~ Tears
Five years after Bácum, Yaquis found my father—a former irregular in the Republic’s guerrilla war against the French—floating face down in his favorite stream, where we used to fish together. The two Yaquis who brought him to me had tears in their eyes when they laid him out on our kitchen table.
He had been investigating something at the American-owned silver mine La Cándida twenty-five miles east of Guaymas—he never told us what and left no notes. He had spent the night in a small hotel there and then come back alone the next day. He had stopped off to fish awhile and give his horse a rest. A large-bore rifle bullet struck him in the back, just to the right of his spine, between the scapulae. It appears he fell into the stream, but then managed to get back to the bank. When I went to the spot to investigate, I saw claw marks that got weaker and weaker as they approached the water and knew that someone had followed up on the attack by forcing him back down into the stream with a hand or boot on his head.
My mother died a year later, having no desire, she said, to go on without him. Federal detectives made inquiries, but withheld any results. Yaquis told us that, shortly after my father’s murder, a man with the mine’s security force had gone north and had not returned. That was twenty-seven years ago. My father was forty-five years old. As far as I’m concerned, the case is still open.”