Freedom Magazine, the voice of the Church of Scientology, featured a renowned Mexican search and rescue team of humanitarians who are known internationally for their courage—Los Topos, “The Moles. 

A massive 8.1 earthquake devastated Mexico City, claiming at least 10,000 lives, leveling some 400 buildings and severely damaging thousands more,” writes Freedom‘s Rebecca Blair. “The ground had hardly stopped shaking when a man named Héctor Méndez raced to the center of the carnage in a desperate search for his brother. He would find his brother Carlos alive, but saw that he was surrounded by many others who weren’t so lucky—their cries to missing loved ones answered only by heart-wrenching silence.”

Méndez continued digging in the rubble for hours, eventually rescuing four people who would have died without his help.  “My life changed that day,”  the former accountant tells Freedom.

 In the three decades since the Mexico City quake, Los Topos have helped with rescue efforts in areas in major disaster zones, saving countless lives, including 15 living victims they dug from the rubble of Haiti after that country’s  7.0 quake in 2010. And it was in Haiti that they met and began their partnership with the Scientology Volunteer Ministers.

 Impressed by the work and courage of the Scientologists and their skill in establishing order and aiding survivors, Méndez and his team trained in the techniques of the Scientology Volunteer Ministers, learning to deliver “assists”—techniques developed by L. Ron Hubbard that address the emotional and spiritual factors in shock, trauma and stress.

Since then, the two groups have worked together in numerous disaster zones including the 2011 Japan tsunami and Acapulco’s Hurricane Manuel of 2013.

“When there is an emergency, there are no nations, there are no religions, there are no social classes,” says Méndez. “There are only people in need.”

For more information or to read the feature “Digging Deep to Save Lives” visit the Freedom Magazine websiteFreedom is the voice of the Church of Scientology. Published since 1968, the magazine seeks out and illuminates solutions to society’s problems. Freedom further spotlights the Church’s human rights, social betterment and volunteer works, thereby advancing, safeguarding and promoting the rights of all.