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Estela de Carlotto hunts for Argentina's grandchildren 'stolen' decades ago (+video)

Estela de Carlotto heads the Grandmothers of Plaza de Mayo, who seek to reunite children taken from their mothers during Argentina's military dictatorship with their real families.

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Estela de Carlotto isn't like most grandmothers. Instead of easing herself into retirement and enjoying the slower pace of life it affords, she remains a dogged workaholic.

Every weekday she rises early without fail in order to make the 70-mile round trip from her hometown of La Plata to an office in the Argentine capital, Buenos Aires.

"I had other ideas about what I'd be doing with my life, such as being with my children," she says, smiling. "I'm an elderly person who has had four children, and I now have 13 grandchildren and one great-grandchild. So I thought I'd be spending time with them. But life gave me another direction."

 

Since 1989 that direction has involved being a "professional" grandmother: As president of Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers of Plaza de Mayo), she is the most visible face of one of South America's largest human rights organizations.

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