Mothers make heartbreaking sacrifices to find remains of their children in the killing fields of Mexico

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The search continues for victims of drug cartels buried in Mexico's mass graves. (KTRK)

Under a harsh wind and the blazing sun, they dig.

"The love of a mother is great," Maria Sanchez told ABC 13's Art Rascon as she stood in a barren dirt field, tools in hand, somewhere near Veracruz, Mexico.

"We want to find our children, we want to find our babies," Sanchez added.

She digs, hour after hour as days spent in the killing fields turn to months.

Sanchez is determined to find her missing son, thought to have been kidnapped two years ago by a drug cartel, now among the more than 30,000 "desparacidos" -- the disappeared. The Mexican government claims the numbers are exaggerated. Yet, with every massacre, another mass grave is found. As kidnappings become more and more frequent, towns become deserted. Cartel members escape prison, the killing fields grow even wider and the incessant battle against the drug kingpins continues on.

"We don't care how many days we're out here, we don't care how hot it is," she said during a daily dig for her son and the many others who had fallen to the same fate.

With no help from the government, another woman named Maria pushes forward. She pulls a metal stake out of the ground. Wondering if it could be her son, she sniffs it for a faint smell of rotting flesh.

"We're looking for the bodies, we're looking for the bones," she said as she was joined by the other mothers digging for clues.

Somewhere, somehow, they say they will find their sons.

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Related Topics:
u.s. & worldgang violencegangdrugs
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