Chile entered a period of political turmoil when Dr Salvador Allende, a socialist, won the 1970 presidential election. After he was overthrown, Chile was governed by a military dictatorship that engaged in massive human rights violations. Some 30 years later, this article summarizes the psychological consequences of the traumas that victims experienced and the emotions triggered in these individuals and their families, as well as the very real difficulties they faced. This report focuses on the loss and grief that many families experienced after a family member was imprisoned and tortured or assassinated, or both. Systemic therapeutic implications of the difficulties these families faced are proposed.