Pablo Escobar was born in 1949. His father was a peasant farmer and his mother was a school teacher. Pablo grew up in Envigado. Envigado was a suburb of the second largest city in Colombia, Medellin. Escobar’s childhood was in a very violent atmosphere. It was a rather brutal time in the consistently violent Colombian history. was growing up in a violent time in Colombia's violent history (Godfather). The period in which Escobar grew up in is known as “La Violencia”(meaning “the violence”) in Colombian History. At this time Colombia was involved in a political feud between the Liberals and Conservatives. Jorge Eliecer Gaitan was a leader of the Liberal group. He was assassinated on April 9, 1948. This act sparked riots, vandalism, and an overall state of panic. Colombian was thrown in to an unceasing state of rebellion and insurrection (Violencia).
In Escobar’s teenage years he was slowly getting into crime. He dropped out of school three months before graduation. He was soon drifting towards small time crime. Escobar had a certain quality about him that was probably the key to his rise to power. He was able to stay overly calm in situations that would frighten normal people (Bowden 17, 19). Pablo was had a great sense for ambition. He did not smoke cigarettes and he rarely drank alcohol. But according to his brother, Roberto, “He did enjoy weed, and his favorite beer: Heineken.” (Gangsters). It was always rumored that Pablo got his start in crime in a rather unconventional way. He and his gang would steal headstones from cemeteries, sandblasting them clean, and reselling them to the public. He actually got his start selling fake lottery tickets and conning people out of there money outside of banks. He then moved into stealing cars. Escobar would steal the cars and sell them to “chop shops”. He would often even drag people from behind the wheel of their car in broad daylight. Once he had made a name for himself stealing cars he began to try different forms of crime. He would offer protection to people so they would not get their car stolen. This way he was making money off of the cars he was stealing, and the cars he was not stealing. Escobar was now more than just a street thug, he was becoming a crime boss. Sometimes when a man owed him money he would kidnap them. He would then ransom them out. If the family did not pay he would kill them. He would even sometime kill them even if the ransom was paid. Pablo soon gained an asset that would lead him to his outlaw status (Bowden 19-20).
Diego Echavarria was a factory owner that was well respected in the high social societies but not well like in the lower class of Medellin. Echavarria was kidnapped and held ransom for fifty thousand dollars. The ransom was paid, but Echavarria was still beaten and strangled to death. Diego Echavarria‘s murder was beneficial to Escobar and his gang in two ways, the fifty thousand dollar ransom and the social justice of it all. He was beginning to become a legend (Bowden 21).
He soon realized that he needed to expand into a market that was already booming in Colombia. He had already been introduced into the drug business by trafficking cocoa paste from where it was grown in the Andes Mountains, to the drug laboratories in Medellin. He would even race his cousin, Gustavo Gaviria, to see who could get there first. Whoever won the race was awarded the full purse. Escobar soon realized he needed to move up in the drug business. He made the change from small time...