Hugo's Life in Photos

Juan Barreto/AFP/Getty


After a high-profile battle with cancer that sent him to Cuba for medical intervention, Hugo Chávez died Tuesday at age 58. Here, a look back at the Venezuelan leader's political and person history.

Pictured here: In 1992, Hugo Chávez went to jail after being arrested for a coup attempt. He came to political prominence following the failed coup.

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Chávez with his wife, Marisabel Rodriguez de Chávez, at his first swearing-in in 1998, after he was elected president. 


Chávez pitches to baseball superstar Sammy Sosa in February of 1999. Cuban President Fidel Castro had challenged the fellow baseball fan to a game in Havana during the summit of Ibero-American leaders.

Jose Miguel Gomez/Reuters

A billboard from Chávez's 2006 reelection campaign stands atop a building in a Caracas slum.


Castro makes fun of Chávez during a tour of the historic district of Caracas in October 2000. Castro was visiting Venezuela to sign an accord to purchase subsidized oil from Venezuela; the two countries are notorious economic and social allies. 

Leslie Mazoch/AP

Chávez and his Defense minister, Raúl Isaías Baduel, attend a military parade in Chávez's honor in 2007. 

Leslie Mazoch/AP

Chávez jokes about his haircut at a press conference in 2007, after being granted free rein to accelerate changes in broad areas of society by presidential decree. The move caused critics to worry he was attempting to a push Venezuela toward a dictatorship.

Ariana Cubillos/AP

Chávez kisses a crucifix after greeting supporters from a balcony of the Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas, Venezuela, in July 2011. Chávez told supporters he was feeling better as he recovered from one of what would be several surgeries to remove cancerous tumors. 

Jorge Silva/Reuters

Chávez stands next to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at the Caracas airport in 2006. "They accuse us of being warmongers," Chávez said of the United States at their joint press conference. "They're the threat."

Ray Stubblebine/Reuters

Chávez holds up a copy of the Noam Chomsky book Hegemony or Survival: America's Quest for Global Dominance as he addresses the 61st General Assembly of the United Nations at U.N. headquarters in 2006. 

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Chávez's most recent political opposition, Henrique Capriles, gestures during a campaign rally in Barinas in 2012. Chávez swept the election, taking 20 of the country's 23 states. 

Pedro Portal

Chávez plays air guitar with a group of artists at a campaign rally in 2012. 

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Chávez waves a Venezuelan flag while speaking to supporters after receiving news of his reelection on October 7, 2012. According to the National Electoral Council, Chávez was reelected with 54.42 percent of the vote, beating opposition candidate Henrique Capriles's 44.97 percent. 

Eduardo Mayorca/EPA, via Landov

Chávez with his daugther, Rosa Virginia, at an event outside Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela in August 2011. Chavez thanked the attendants who came to bid him farewell for receiving his third chemotherapy at the Military Hospital in the capital. 

Fernando Llano/AP

An image of Chávez is held high as people gather to pray for him at Simon Bolivar Square in Caracas in December 2012. Doctors began operating on Chávez in Cuba, his government said, after his cancer reappeared despite a year and a half of surgeries and treatments.