The Miami Herald
October 24, 1998
         Ex-leader of Honduran Communist Party

             TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras -- (AP) -- Rigoberto Padilla Rush, former leader of
             Honduras' Communist Party, has died. He was 69.

             Padilla was buried Thursday, two days after he died of a stroke that he suffered in

             Padilla joined the Communist Party in 1945 and participated in the three-month
             strike by 60,000 workers against the U.S.-based United Fruit Co. and other
             companies in 1954. The action led to improved labor conditions and influenced
             union movements throughout Latin America.

             In the following years, Padilla was jailed three times and frequently went into exile,
             spending a total of 17 years out of the country in Cuba, Nicaragua, Bulgaria and
             the Soviet Union.

             Padilla was secretary general of the party for about 20 years until it split in the late
             1970s between pro-Soviet and pro-Chinese branches.

             During the 1980s, he participated in pro-Soviet communist guerrilla groups that
             tried without success to topple the Honduran government. In 1990, he was one of
             about 2,000 leftists who accepted a general amnesty and returned home.

             In his later years, Padilla was a leading member of the tiny Democratic Unification
             Party, which grew out of the Communist Party. He is survived by his Cuban-born
             wife, Rosario Roiz, and five children.