Family and friends of murdered radio personality Gaby Ramos hold candlelight vigil

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They came in the crowd.

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Family members of slain Utah radio personality Gabriella Cifuentes Castilla, known as Gaby Ramos, were overwhelmed as friends, fans of her program, and neighbors flocked to her Salt Lake County home to pay their respects. shown outside. Some brought flowers, others brought devotional candles or balloons and all agreed on the legacy that Ms. Ramos left behind: one of selfless kindness and generosity.

“She was a DJ but she was also so much more – she was a sister, a friend and a mother. And I don’t know of anyone who didn’t love her,” Ms. Ramos’ sister Rocio Cifuentes told the crowd. Told.


“She always did better things than me. She always finished everything she started, she was always put together and I always told her she was the perfect version of the woman I aspire to be. “

Ms Cifuentes says she was with Ms Ramos on Sunday, 17 October when her sister’s former fiancé, Manuel Omar Burciaga Peiria, was accused of coming around 1am to claim an engagement ring.

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After 911 was called, there was a loud knock from the front door and she says the couple thought it was a responding police officer.

Instead, Mr Burciaga Perea is accused of returning with a gun and allegedly shooting Ms Ramos several times. Ms Sifuentes says she held her dying sister when she breathed her last.

The next morning, the Taylorsville Police Department shared photos of Mr Burciaga Perea, whom they believed to be “armed and dangerous”.

And during Tuesday’s surveillance, the department said it had secured an arrest warrant against the suspect.

“It gives us solace that the authorities are working on this,” Ms Cifuentes said. She then thanked members of the community for their support in sharing her sister’s story. “You’ve been a balm to my soul,” she said, holding back tears.

Activist Martha Black was also among those in attendance. She remembers Ms. Ramos as a “wonderful woman” whose “light hasn’t dimmed and her voice isn’t turned off…she was positive, she was happy, she was sunny.”

Calling on the Gabby Petito case, Ms. Black asked media present to continue sharing Ms. Ramos’s story and image once the initial wave of interest subsided.

“We saw how much attention other women get in the media – it’s a fact. Black and brown women deserve equal attention… We deserve equal exposure. We want Gabby’s face in the media every day,” Ms. Black, who met Ramos shortly after arriving in Utah, said. “She matters. Her life matters.”

the mantra ofjustice for gabbyThen the air flooded in as Ms. Ramos’ nine-year-old daughter, Julieta, distributed purple stick necklaces to attendees in honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

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“Look how many people here who love you,” said Monica Acuna, microphone in hand. “No doubt you have achieved your goal of impacting lives, raising women’s voice and leaving a good future for your daughter. Don’t worry about her; there are many people here who will look after her and take care of her. will do.”

Ms Acuna, who worked with Ms Ramos at KMRI La Mas Picocita, also called for an end to the stigma in Latino communities around domestic violence.

“Women, men, this message is for everyone,” she said. “You don’t have to stand up for anything that hurts you, that hurts you. There is help out there for you… Speak up so that there is no less between us.”

According to a National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey published in 2017 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three Latinas (34.4 percent) reported being the victim of sexual/physical violence or stalking of their partner. That number is expected to be higher since the pandemic, thanks to factors such as health care, cultural leanings, language barriers and immigration status.

“No one deserves to have their life taken like this regardless of your situation,” Ms Akuna continued. “We are all the same here. We have come to this country for a better future and we all have rights.

Her message was echoed by the radio station, which has shared resources and information for those facing domestic violence on its social channels since Ms Ramos’ death.

After the speeches, Ms. Acuna played some of her friend’s favorite songs from the portable speaker, including “Afuera” by Mexican rock band Cafeence and “Don’t Stop Me Now” by Queen, as family members offered sweet bread. made his way through the crowd and atolea traditional drink made from Time, for the attendees.

As people began to disperse and the flicker of candlelight appeared on a poster-sized portrait of her sister, Ms. Sifuentes was overcome with emotion.

speak with Granthshala, she referred to the past 72 hours as “living hell” and said the family would not stop until they had answers. “It’s been tough, but we want justice,” she said, “so that women who are facing violence speak up.”

He also thanked neighbors, law enforcement and staff at the Mexican consulate for their ongoing support. “It gives me strength,” she said.

Ms. Cifuentes hopes the outpouring of support will resonate with her orphaned niece.

“I wish for her that she grew up in a safe country,” she said. “That she knows we love her and that there is a whole community supporting her.”


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