Pablo Escobar - Narcos - PABLO ESCOBAR in the EYES of HIS FAMILY

Pablo Escobar's signature is on this official identification document, issued by the government of Colombia. Among other things, it notes his date of birth and includes one of his thumbprints.


On the day after his 44th birthday, Pablo Escobar was nearing the end of his life. His cousin, Luzmila, recalls what happened earlier in the day:

He woke up at 12, and I left him some lunch because he said: “Come back at 3 o’clock.”  I looked at my watch, it was five past three, so I told my kids: “I have to go see Abelito.” (From interview included in “Pablo Escobar's Private Archive”.)

As she approached the home in Medellin, where Escobar was staying, Luzmila was surprised at what she saw:

Some cars here, a lot of people. I asked the taxi driver: “What is going on?”

He answered, scornfully, “Are they taking Pablito?”

I saw him up there [on the rooftop], and I felt so sad. I said: “My goodness, they’re going to take him.” But he always said: “They will never get me. I will kill myself, or something, but they will not get me.” He was brave. He didn’t let them catch him.” (From interview included in “Pablo Escobar's Private Archive”.)

What does Luzmila mean by that statement? Pablo’s family has always believed that he took his own life.

Why would they think such a thing? Pablo was shot three times—in the left leg, in the shoulder and on the right side of his head. The fatal shot was behind his ear. Pablo’s family believes the head shot was self-inflicted because that is the way Pablo always said he would end his own life (if he saw no way out).

In his book Pablo Escobar My Father, Juan Pablo (who is known, today, as Sebastián Marroquín) tells us why the facts have convinced him to disagree with the official story of Escobar’s death:

Juan Pablo Escobar wrote that he’s certain his father delivered the fatal shot, because Pablo Escobar told his son on numerous occasions that if his enemies surrounded him he would shoot himself in the right ear to avoid being captured alive. In the famous photo of Pablo Escobar's body on the roof, the drug lord's Sig Sauer—the [9 mm] gun he always told his son he'd use to kill himself if the need arose—is lying next to Escobar, while his Glock pistol remains in its holster.

Most of Pablo's siblings were in the area on that day. Luz Maria thinks that was destiny:

Destiny had placed all his siblings in the vicinity ... When they took Pablo down in the stretcher, and I saw his toenails, I told my mom, “It’s Pablo.” (From interview included in “Pablo Escobar's Private Archive”.)

Pablo’s mother recalls how she learned that her son had been fatally shot:

Mariela, my daughter, came. She already knew.  “Come on, Mama! Let’s go see ... I got in [the van] and she told me ... It was full of soldiers everywhere, and she went all over sidewalks and everything with the van. (From interview included in “Pablo Escobar's Private Archive”.)

Does Luz Maria also believe that her brother committed suicide?

Yes, Pablo committed suicide, even though many people say he didn’t. (From interview included in “Pablo Escobar's Private Archive”.)

Escobar had grown a beard, which covered much of his face, which he used as a way to keep himself from being instantly recognized. In death, he did not look like man who appeared in the mug shots or in so many videos.

Jaime Gaviria, his confidant, sums up the life of his close friend:

That was Pablo. He made his life in the country and the world. He died on his path, and he died as he lived. If he was the bad one, and Colombia goes from bad to worse, then who is really the bad one? ... I see Pablo Escobar as my friend. He was a great friend, and I have very few friends. (From interview included in “Pablo Escobar's Private Archive”.)

Pablo’s family, understandably, has a different view of him, and his deeds, than many other people. Roberto, his brother, observes:

Pablo is dead and Colombia is worse off. Colombia is flooded with drugs because the people find no other alternative to their needs. (From interview included in “Pablo Escobar's Private Archive”.)

Now that time has passed, since the notorious drug-lord’s death, his sister, Luz Maria, seeks forgiveness from the people whom her brother wronged. So does Escobar’s son, Juan Pablo, who has changed his name and participated in a documentary about the “Sins of My Father.”

His mother, who died in 2006, always pointed-out the good things:

People even believe that Pablo does miracles, and they pick the number on his grave and win the lottery. I do that every now and then, but I never win. (From interview included in “Pablo Escobar's Private Archive”.)

A fair question to ponder, at the end of this story, tracks along those same “never win” lines.

Pablo did what he did, throughout his life, and accumulated a massive fortune. At the end of his journey, if he asked himself these questions—“What did I really win, and at what cost?”—how do you think he’d respond?

0 Question or Comment?
click to read or comment
2 Questions 2 Ponder
click to read and respond
0 It's Awesome!
vote for your favorite

Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5190stories and lessons created

Original Release: Sep 06, 2015

Updated Last Revision: Sep 03, 2016

To cite this story (For MLA citation guidance see easybib or OWL ):

"PABLO ESCOBAR in the EYES of HIS FAMILY" AwesomeStories.com. Sep 06, 2015. Jan 29, 2020.
Awesome Stories Silver or Gold Membership Required
Awesome Stories Silver or Gold Membership Required
Show tooltips