Ingrid Betancourt
PAGE 4
Despite threat of punishment—and sometimes death—Ingrid defied her captors and attempted to escape on many occasions. In Even Silence Has an End, Ingrid writes in detail about these failed attempts and says that each time she was caught trying to flee, the punishments grew worse.

Once, after she was re-captured, Ingrid says she was beaten by the guerrillas. Then, she says they put a chain around her neck and walked her back to camp like a dog.

Read about one of her escape attempts.

After awhile, Ingrid says that the fear of getting caught was worse than the fear of dying. "I especially thought that perhaps [death] was like freedom," Ingrid says. "Especially because the burden of the pain I was causing to my family was just unbearable."

Ingrid says her family was her sun, moon and stars, but she felt as if she had frozen their lives. "[I thought], 'They cannot move on because they're waiting for me. And this could last for 20 more years,'" she says.

When Ingrid was kidnapped in 2002, her son, Lorenzo, was 13 years old and her daughter, Melanie, was 16 years old. "I had to just try to imagine how they had transformed themselves. I would close my eyes and try to just project the face of Melanie into a more mature girl and then woman, and of my little boy to a man with another voice," she says.

FROM: Exclusive: The Bravest Mom in the World Set Free: Ingrid Betancourt
Published on September 22, 2010

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