Jesús Gayoso Rey

Jesús Gayoso Rey (26 April 1971 – 27 March 2020) was a Spanish Lieutenant colonel Civil Guard, head of the Rapid Action Group since 2014.

Jesús Gayoso Rey
Birth nameJesús Gayoso Rey
Born(1971-04-26)26 April 1971
Mieres, Asturias, Spain
DiedMarch 27, 2020(2020-03-27) (aged 48)
Logroño, Spain
AllegianceKingdom of Spain
Service/branchSpanish Civil Guard
Years of service1996–2020
RankLieutenant colonel
Commands heldHead of the Rapid Action Group
Chief of Haro lockdown during coronavirus pandemic in Spain


He was born in the Asturian town of Mieres in 1971, but soon moved with his family to La Coruña, where he passed his first years. He was the son of a Civil Guard and was married.[1][2] He died March 27, 2020, due to complications from COVID-19.


In 1991, he joined the Zaragoza General Military Academy, where he graduated as a lieutenant in July 1996. That same year and after successfully completing the special training course, he was assigned to the 1st Company of the Rapid Action Group (Grupo de Acción Rápida, GAR), based in Bilbao, where his unit participated in ETA's fight against terrorism. When he was promoted to captain he put himself in charge of the 3rd Company of Navarra, and later, between 2001 and 2007, he directed the 2nd Company of San Sebastián, based in Inchaurrondo.[3][4]

As commander, he was assigned to the General Staff of the Directorate-General of the Civil Guard, where he remained between 2009 and 2014. Finally, he returned as Chief of GAR, the elite unit of the Civil Guard, where he was promoted to lieutenant colonel.[5]

During his professional career, he participated in several humanitarian missions abroad, being assigned to the mission in Afghanistan between 2009 and 2010, and in countries such as Tunisia, Belarus, Mauritania, Niger, Turkey, Bulgaria, Chile, Israel, Iraq, Finland, Romania, Honduras and Morocco. He was appointed as leader of the European Union project GARSI-Sahel where police from African countries similar to GAR are trained. His last commission was in Niger, where he was deployed with a Company of Gendarmes on the dangerous border with Mali.

2020 Haro lockdownEdit

After the end of ETA, the GAR headquarters was established in Logroño. La Rioja is one of the regions of Spain hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. During the first weeks, one of the main outbreaks was located in the Rioja town of Haro.[6] To contain the disease, the GAR in that municipality, did security and disinfection tasks.[7] Simultaneously, Lt. Col. Jesús Gayoso contracted the disease, being admitted to the ICU of the San Pedro de Logroño Hospital, although he was not physically deployed in Haro.[8][9]

On 27 March 2020, when in Spain there were 64,059 confirmed cases of the COVID-19 disease and 4,858 deaths, the Ministry of the Interior in a statement announced the death of the Civil Guard[10] which made it the fourth fatality within the security corps due to coronavirus disease.[11] His death shocked all the Security Forces and Corps, organizing a spontaneous tribute at 20 hours on the day of his death by members of the National Police Force and of the Local Police in the barracks where the deceased agent had his last destination, coinciding with the applause for the emrgency personnel that are repeated throughout the country.[12][13]