Remembering Juan Carlos Reynaga


Alexis Cazares, Editor

On July 8th, 2022 Juan Carlos Reynaga, a fellow student of ours, was fatally shot by unknown gang members. Juan was walking home from his shift at Walmart when a car with two people inside pulled up to him. They asked him twice if he was in a gang. He said no. Juan’s brother confirmed that he wasn’t lying. He turned around and walked away. Then at least one person in the vehicle got out and shot at Juan five times. Bullets struck him once in the leg and once, fatally, in his neck. He was taken to the hospital immediately and was rushed into surgery, but, sadly, didn’t make it

“His home, his family and community came together to  take back their neighborhood and demand justice.”

Memories of Juan

Juan was a Junior at Gilbert High School last spring. He was always there for his friends when you needed him. Juan was always the one friend you could talk to without him judging. Juan would put others first before himself. He had made a positive impact on his past teachers.

Here are some of the comments from his teachers: “Sending love to the Reynaga Family.  He was in my 5th grade class, and I fondly remember him.”

“I had Juan in class and enjoyed my time with him. He was very smart and friendly. He did a great job and worked hard to return to AHS to graduate next year. He will be missed.”

“Juan was our student and he was truly a respectful and very smart young man. I am so sorry for your loss. Prayers for your family’s sad and broken hearts.”

Gilbert High School dedicated this school year to Juan Carlos Reynaga during the first day of school.

In a month after Juan was shot and killed outside his family’s home, Leticia Reynaga ( Juan’s Mother) said that she doesn’t understand why they killed her son. She said her boy was so good. Part of that justice is putting those who took her son’s life behind bars. Gloria Aguilar, another mother in the neighborhood, told Eyewitness News in Spanish that she couldn’t imagine her neighbor’s pain. The tragedy has further united families here. Aguilar said she hoped they reach their goals for the good of their children.

A little over 50 parents, kids and residents marched along the sidewalks around the Edison Park area demanding support and seeking simple infrastructure investments from the city like more lights and better safety.

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