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Day of memory of Boys Heroes

Day of memory of Boys Heroes

Every year on this day, the Mexicans remember six young men who died in the Battle of Chapultepec (the castle in Mexico City) in 1847, during the war of Mexico with the United States.

They were six, not boys, but not men yet. Five of them were the cadets of the Military Academy, and one just graduated it, but has not yet received a confirmation of the appointment into the army. Guys who defended their land from invaders were:

Fernando Montes de Oca (18 years 4 months) was killed in the doorway, defended by himself, by an American soldier, who has penetrated into the room through the window and struck him from behind;

Francisco Marquez (almost 14 years), died in the castle, he was approached by a group of soldiers, offering to surrender, but the boy shot one of them, and the others shot the cadet;

Juan de la Barrera (19 years 3 months), died on the fortifications in the south of the hill where the bodies of Boy Heroes were found later;

Juan Escutia (20 and a half), died on the western slope of the hill: he was wounded by a bullet and fell on the stones;

Vicente Suarez (14 years 5 months), died at the outpost in bayonet fighting against the Americans;

Agustin Melgar (almost 18 years), died of gunshots and stab-wounds received in close combat.

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The remains of killed were buried in the southern slope of the hill of Chapultepec.

In 1878, a group of cadets who survived the Battle of Chapultepec in 1847, became a part of the Association of the Military Academy and achieved an establishment of a ceremony in honor of those killed and injured. Thanks to their efforts, in 1884, the first monument to the heroes was established.

In 1947, on the centenary of the battle, the cadets bodies were exhumed are placed in urns, and a Memorable sign was put on the place of their death.

On September 27, 1952 a monument, which is called "Altar to the Motherland" was opened. Into the each of the six columns of the monument an urn containing the remains of one of the young heroes was placed, and under the central figure of the monument – the remains of General Felipe Santiago Xicotencatl, who participated in the defense of Chapultepec. The monument is located at the end of Paseo de la Reforma, near the entrance to the modern Chapultepec Park, surrounding to this day existing hill with a castle.

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