Mourners Pack Hialeah Funeral Home at Wake for Shooting Victim Carlos Gavilanes

It was the first wake to be held one of the 6 people Pedro Vargas killed

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The family and friends of 33-year-old Carlos Gavilanes began their goodbyes to a father and partner at a Hialeah funeral home Tuesday evening. Luis Melendez and Roque Florez remembered their friend. On Tuesday, Elmo Lugo, the former boss of Pedro Vargas, the Hialeah gunman who killed Gavilanes and five other people, said that Vargas had difficulty when changes were made in their department at Miami Dade College. (Published Tuesday, Jul 30, 2013)

    The family of 33-year-old Carlos Gavilanes began their goodbyes to a father and partner at a Hialeah funeral home Tuesday evening. Two-year-old Victoria was pushed in a stroller as her mother draped an arm around her 9-year-old brother, Carlito.

    For more than four hours scores of people packed the wake for Gavilanes at San Jose Funeral Home. Heads hung low, they offered hugs to one another.

    Hialeah Gunman Was "Very Quiet, Very Introverted, Very Private": Former Boss

    [MI] Hialeah Gunman Pedro Vargas Was a "Very Quiet, Very Introverted, Very Private" Person, Former Boss Says
    Pedro Vargas, the man who gunned down six people before he was shot and killed by police in Hialeah, was a "very quiet, very introverted, very private person,” said Elmo Lugo, who was Vargas' boss in the media services department at Miami Dade College. Hialeah Police Chief Sergio Velazquez discussed the Vargas case. (Published Tuesday, Jul 30, 2013)

    The wake was the first to be held for one of the shooting victims of Pedro Vargas, who police said killed six people last Friday.

    A group of Gavilanes’ friends showed up in memorial T-shirts to offer condolences. They were longtime friends of Gavilanes who played in a handball league together on weekends.

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    [MI] Hialeah Police Chief Discusses Rescue of Hostages
    Knowing Pedro Vargas had hostages, police tried to talk him out of a fifth-floor apartment, Hialeah Police Chief Sergio Velazquez said. But the SWAT team was ultimately forced to go in and rescue the hostages, he said. (Published Tuesday, Jul 30, 2013)

    Clad in a T-shirt that had a picture of Gavilanes holding a handball, Luis Melendez remembered his friend as a family man.

    "He was a good friend to us. We were always together on the weekends,” Melendez said. “He was a good father. A good friend. A good family man. We will miss him.”

    Neighbors Leave Memorial and Recover After Hialeah Massacre

    While hundreds continued to say a final farewell, miles away on the 1400 block of West 46th Street where the shooting rampage took place, a prayer vigil was being held.

    More than 30 people gathered in front of Gavilanes’ apartment door praying and singing. A representative from the Ecuadoran Consulate was also there to say a few words. He offered to fly Gavilanes back to Ecuador to be buried, but the Gavilanes family declined, saying Carlos Gavilanes' final resting place will be here in Miami.

    Funeral services are set for Wednesday at 11 a.m. at St. John the Apostle Church at 475 E. 4th Ave. with the burial to follow at Miami Memorial Park.

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