Corrections Dept honors 1980 prison riot guard

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – A New Mexico prison guard, who escaped one of the nation’s deadliest prison riots, has received a posthumous honor.

The Department of Corrections presented the Medal of Honor to the daughter of Herman Gallegos last week after officials finally located his family.

Officials say Gallegos escaped the deadly 1980 prison riot by disguising himself as an inmate.

During the riot, inmates killed 33 fellow prisoners.

More than 100 other inmates and guards were hurt in the 36-hour riot fueled by overcrowded conditions. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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