The Devil’s Highway
The novel The Devil’s Highway by Luis Urea is based on a true story. It tells the tragic story of a group of Mexican immigrants who try to cross the United State border. Although many Mexicans have died in the desert trying to cross the border previously with this particular story is unique in that it was such a large group that traveled and so many of them died. The title, “The Devil’s Highway” is the name of the part if the desert these men crossed which is know to be one of the most deadliest regions on the continent and has claimed the lives of many. In 1950 a man known as Francisco Salazar wrote that Devil’s highway was a vast graveyard of unknown dead. The book takes you into the tropical area of Veracruz where most of the men are from and gives you to opportunity to know whom they are. Most of them were small plot farmers looking to work in the Untied States in order to better provide for their families. In addition the novel enlightens you on the smuggling ring, which is big business in Mexico. The Cercas family out of Phoenix ran the smuggling ring. People such as Don Moi Garcia who was higher up in the chain would drive his American car and smoke his American cigarettes recruiting people to cross the border. It was a business and the Welton 26 were charged approximately thirteen thousand pesos or eighteen hundred dollars per person. One hot day in May of 2001, 26 men known as the Welton 26 set out to cross the United State border into southern Arizona desert along Devil’s Highway. The trip was anywhere from 35-65 miles long. Three guides called guides led their trip. The guides earn about 100 to 150 dollars per person. Mendez who was known as Jesus Louis Romos was the lead guide of the Welton 26. The Welton 26 put their trust in the man to get them across and he instead got them lost.
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