October 11, 1970
*translated from original French*
Sunday, 3:00 p.m.
M. Robert Bourassa:
1. I believe I am writing the most significant
letter of my life;
2. For the moment, I am in perfect health.
I am treated well, even with courtesy.
3. I insist that the police stop all searches
to find me. If it reaches that point, it would
result in a shootout, which I would certainly not
live through. This is absolutely urgent.
4. You have, in short, the power over my life.
If there were nothing else to it but that, and
my sacrifice might bring good results, one could
think of it. But we are in the presence of a
well-organized uprising, which will finish only
with the release of the "political prisoners".
After me, there would be a 3rd, then a 4th and
a 20th. If all the politicians get protection,
it will strike elsewhere, in other classes of
society. Act immediately and thus avoid a
quite useless bloodbath and panic.
5. You know my personal situation merits some
attention. I had two brothers; they are both dead.
I remain alone as head of a large family which
includes my mother, my sisters, my own wife and
my children as well as Roland's children, to whom
I am the guardian. My death would create an
irrevocable grief, as you know the ties which bind
the members of my family. It is not just me which
is in question but a dozen people, all of them
women and young children. I believe that you understand!
6. If the release of the "political prisoners"
is organized and completed, I have a guarantee
that my personal security will be assured. Mine...
and that of the others who could follow.
7. This could be done quickly, as by taking more time
I continue to die little by little in captivity.
Decide... on my life or my death... I depend
on you and thank you.
P.S. I repeat, put an end to the search.
And also ensure that the police are warned not to
continue without you knowing it. The success of
this search would be a death sentence for me.
The Bourassa Government had agreed to negotiate with the FLQ Terrorists, but the talks broke down after two days.
Mr. Laporte's plea for his life didn't exactly work. He was strangled with a chain by members of the Chénier cell of the FLQ, six days after this letter was sent, as he was trying to call out for help.