LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Family and friends say you couldn’t discuss Jerry Lopez with out mentioning his huge household.

Whereas the 39-year-old supply driver labored, his spouse, Karen Lopez, homeschooled their seven youngsters, most of whom have been adopted by the couple after they fostered them by means of the Clark County foster care system. He was just lately promoted and celebrated his 13-year battle for U.S. citizenship.

“He’d simply come (dwelling from work), throw his stuff down, not even change and simply soar into the chaos of our day, roll across the ground, play with the children,” Karen mentioned inside an in depth buddy’s Henderson dwelling Thursday afternoon, talking about her husband’s “household man” perspective. “All the children would all the time scream, ‘Daddy’s dwelling!’ as quickly as they heard the storage go up.”

Now, these seven youngsters need to their mom for consolation. She too is struggling to simply accept that Jerry was killed Wednesday morning by a person that simply killed his personal mom.

Jerry Lopez (right) featured with his family of seven children and wife two weeks before Christmas 2023. (Photo courtesy, Karen Lopez)

Jerry Lopez (proper) featured together with his household of seven youngsters and spouse two weeks earlier than Christmas 2023. (Picture courtesy, Karen Lopez)

Whereas en path to work round 4:00 Wednesday morning, a person in his 30s on a carjacking spree provoked officers to shoot at him a number of occasions. Police mentioned he stole a patrol automobile after taking pictures his mom in a southeast valley neighborhood.

Jerry was in one among three civilian automobiles carjacked at gunpoint afterward. He was driving his household’s white van — the one automobile giant sufficient to move their household of 9. Police mentioned they heard a gunshot and the suspect pulling the occupant out.

When Jerry didn’t reply his telephone, Karen drove to the place the information mentioned a taking pictures occurred. She was on scene for 5 hours earlier than anybody confirmed her husband was lifeless, she mentioned.

“My stepdad needed to catch me. I just about handed out. I simply collapsed as a result of I used to be like — I simply saved saying, ‘No, no, it’s not actual. It’s not actual,’ ” Karen mentioned, holding again tears. “(Jerry) pulled over after seeing the cop vehicles, and the man simply pulled up behind him and shot him and mainly threw him exterior the automobile like a canine and ran over my husband and simply took off.”

Over the subsequent 24 hours, Karen mentioned her youngsters — ages 3 to 11 — realized their dad was gone.

“(The oldest little one) simply final evening saved texting my husband’s telephone. He mentioned, ‘Mommy, I do know he’s not going to reply, however I simply need — hopefully he can nonetheless learn them and I need him to know that I really like him.’ And he mentioned, ‘I assume now I’m going to need to be a father for all the infants,’ ” Karen mentioned.

“Our one 5-year-old simply saved asking me to open my telephone and present him an image of daddy in heaven with Jesus, and I mentioned, ‘I want I might present you that.’ He acquired upset as a result of I couldn’t. He says, ‘No, open your telephone and present me,’ and I mentioned, ‘I can’t.’

Jerry Lopez with his family. (Photo courtesy, Karen Lopez)

Jerry Lopez together with his household. (Picture courtesy, Karen Lopez)

“I’m simply having to maintain it collectively in entrance of my children. I don’t know what that appears like, however I simply know I’ve to. I don’t have a alternative. I don’t have a option to disintegrate. I’ve my moments the place I do, however I don’t have that luxurious to disintegrate as a result of I’ve seven children which can be relying upon me.”

Whereas an internet search of Jerry’s identify labels him a “carjacking sufferer,” that’s not how Karen and associates need him to be remembered. As a substitute, they reminisce about his involvement as a father, love as a husband, giving as a buddy and dedication to his religion. Karen added he just lately started teaching his son’s hockey workforce.

“Jerry wouldn’t ask for something, however he can be there on the drop of a hat if any individual known as him and wanted one thing. He simply would provide the shirt off his again,” Karen mentioned, visibly transitioning between mushy smiles and indignant eyes. “I simply need individuals to recollect him for the loving individual that he was, the household man that he was, the person of God that he was. Simply essentially the most kindness, (most light) soul. That’s who Jerry is. Not this sufferer.”

Jerry Lopez with his wife. (Photo courtesy, Karen Lopez)

Jerry Lopez together with his spouse. (Picture courtesy, Karen Lopez)

Whereas Karen says she has a powerful assist system behind her and her youngsters, she can be tasked with one other drawback: transportation. She says the van Jerry was driving to work is now totaled and in addition the place the suspect was discovered deceased.

Pals of the household have established a GoFundMe to help Karen. The outline says it’s going to assist pay for “the memorial and funeral bills, present for the household’s residing bills, handle the kids’s wants, contribute to an emergency fund, and help with authorized {and professional} charges.”

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