Written by 03:30 World

Ángeles Flórez Peón, Spanish Civil War’s Last Militiawoman, Dies at 105

Ángeles Flórez Peón was 17 when she braved mortar and artillery fire to bring food to her fellow Republican volunteers in the trenches of northern Spain during the Spanish Civil War.

At 18, she was a nurse tending to the wounded in the doomed effort to save Spain from a military takeover. Nationalist troops attacked the hospital where she worked, in coastal Asturias, and she was later arrested and sentenced to 15 years in a women’s prison — marked forever, she said, by the memory of seeing fellow inmates being taken out at night and shot.

Ms. Flórez Peón died on May 23 in a hospital in Gijón, Asturias. She was 105. The Spanish press, which first reported her death, called her the last remaining militiawoman of the Spanish Civil War.

Pedro Sánchez, Spain’s Socialist prime minister, paid tribute to her on social media, writing, “105 years of dignity, commitment and struggle for equality, liberty and social justice.”

Last year, in regional elections in Asturias, Ms. Flórez Peón, at 104, was the oldest Socialist candidate on the ballot.

After her death, the daily newspaper El País wrote, “Her life straddled an era of intense emotions, of hopes, grand illusions and joys, the irruption of war, repression, enormous suffering, punishment and exile.”


Last modified: 22 June 2024