As the devastating U.S. fueled civil war in Nicaragua grinds on, the terrible toll of maimed children grows relentlessly.
Because of fuel shortages and the threat of land mines few vehicles travel this once busy highway from Managua to Jinotega. Those that do are often dangerously overcrowded.
A young boy carrying a tub of beans pauses for an instant before rushing home. The busy streets of Jinotega empty at dusk because of frequent evening Contra attacks.
Elda Sanchez, 7, across from her home in Matagalpa, was riding to a market in a neighboring town with 51 others in the back of a large truck. It drove over a land mine, killing or seriously injuring 48. Elda, her father, and her aunt lost legs.
Domingo Jimenez rides to his home in Pantasma. He can no longer run.
A nurse in the clinic in Pantasma examines Domingo’s stump. A land mine destroyed his leg and his dreams of playing baseball in the U.S.
Bayardo Orozco, 5, being comforted by his father, Pedro, was riddled by shrapnel from a Contra-laid mine. He was playing with his brother Alfredo, who lost an eye in the same explosion.
Kenia lost both legs in a grenade attack. She is being treated by Dr. Ricardo Zamora and nurse Hilda Espinosa.
Yalitza Galeano’s mother holds her as nurse Espinosa cleans bullet wounds in both of her legs, again without any anesthesia. Yalitza, 4, was caught in crossfire while playing in her yard.