AP intern Armando Montaño found dead in Mexico City
Twitter profile picture of the recent college graduate.
Armando Montaño, who was working as a summer news intern for the Associated Press (AP) in Mexico City, was found dead in an elevator shaft early Saturday, June 30.
The 22-year-old aspiring journalist was “a smart, joyful, hardworking and talented young man,” said Marjorie Miller, AP’s Latin America editor based in Mexico.
Montaño’s body was found in the elevator shaft of an apartment building near where he lived in the neighborhood of Condesa. The AP Mexico bureau is waiting for Mexican authorities to investigate the circumstances of his death. They do not suspect his death was related to his journalistic endeavors or any of the stories he was working on.
The Colorado Springs resident arrived in Mexico City in early June after graduating from Grinnell College in Iowa with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and a concentration in Latin American studies.This fall, he was set to start a journalism master’s program in Barcelona.
During his stay, he covered stories including the shooting of three federal policemen at Mexico’s City airport as well as the saga of nine young Namibian elephants who wound up on an animal reserve in Mexico’s Puebla state.
“He absolutely loved journalism and was soaking up everything he could,” said Miller. “In his short time with the AP, he won his way into everyone’s hearts with his hard work, his effervescence and his love of the profession.”
In December and January, Montaño covered the Iowa presidential caucuses as a news intern for The New York Times.
“Mando was a standout young journalist, with a rare passion and exuberance for life and for people,” said Richard Berke, an assistant managing editor at The New York Times. “He accomplished so much and touched so many in a short time, and his potential was truly limitless.”
Montaño, born in Massachusetts, was a fluent Spanish speaker and belonged to the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and the National Association of Gay and Lesbian Journalists. He grew up in Colorado, but also lived in Costa Rica, Argentina on the U.S.-Mexico border with his family.
“The loss of this vibrant young journalist is a shock to his colleagues and the long list of people who called Armando friend,” said Kathleen Carroll, AP’s executive editor.