Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Mother grieves for sons killed in Ruskin shootings

RUSKIN — Pasquala Quezada lost her husband to a heart attack six years ago on New Year's Eve. She lost her only two sons, her best friends, when they were shot to death on the morning of Thanksgiving.

Now, she said, she's got nothing left.

"My heart is destroyed," Quezada said. "I only had my two sons. I gave everything for them, and they gave everything for me."

Deputies are still looking for a man who emerged early Thursday from a green minivan with a .45-caliber pistol and shot six people, killing two, outside a house at 604 Ocean Mist Court in Ruskin.

Sergio Guitran, 22, and Juan Guitran, 28, were killed. Richard Cantu, 31, is in extremely critical condition with a gunshot wound to the head. Daniel Beltran, 24, and Ramon Galan, 29, who had upper-body gunshot wounds, and Gonzalo Guevara, 28, who was shot in the wrist, are in stable condition.

Quezada, 50, said a woman who witnessed the shooting about 2:30 a.m. at the house told her a man showed up claiming he was a deputy looking for someone who was not at that house.

He told people to get on their knees and asked for identification. Someone came out of the bathroom, startling the man, and he started shooting.

Juan Guitran, after being shot, stood up and looked for his brother, Quezada was told. She said they were dedicated to each other.

"I think that's why God took them together," Quezada said. "Juan always said if something happened to his brother, he'd have to kill himself because he couldn't handle it."

Her sons have worked hard to help their family since age 16, she said. Lately, Sergio spent 14-hour days working on medical equipment at a physician's office. She cried Friday with his co-workers.

"Sergio would call on his nightly break and say, 'Are you okay? We already lost Dad, and we don't want anything to happen to you,' " Quezada said.

Juan worked at Badcock Home Furniture & More. Quezada said they both came home with paychecks and asked what she needed.

They were both football fans who teased each other when their favorite team did better. Sergio liked the Denver Broncos. Juan had just washed his No. 94 Dallas Cowboys jersey, ready for the next game.

They spent weekends hosting friends and family for cookouts. Quezada made potato salad for them. If one brother stayed out late, the other called to make sure he got home safely.

Every day, they told her they loved her.

She said her sons stayed out of trouble because they didn't want to hurt her. When they were shot, she said, they must have worried for her.

Johnny Palacios, a cousin of the brothers', said the family can't understand how this could happen to them.

"It's a hell of a thing to wake up to on Thanksgiving weekend," Palacios, 37, said. "Two of my cousins dead. Two others shot. I just hope they catch the guy who did it."

It is a top priority, said Larry McKinnon, a Hillsborough Sheriff's Office spokesman. The shooter is considered armed and extremely dangerous, he said.

Deputies said the shooter wore a black T-shirt with the logo "Sheriff" on the front and the word "Security" on the back. He was described as a white male in his 30s or 40s with short, dark brown or black bushy hair. The shooter has not been identified any further.

"We're getting closer to what the motive is," McKinnon said. "We have some strong leads on that."

The Sheriff's Office would not release other details until a suspect is identified or a warrant could be issued.

Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay is offering a $1,000 reward for a tip that leads to the gunman's identification and arrest. Anyone with information can call the Sheriff's Office at (813) 247-8200 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-873-TIPS (8477). They can also report anonymously online at crimestopperstb.com or text "CSTB plus your tip" to 274637 (CRIMES).

Ileana Morales can be reached at (813) 226-3386 or imorales@sptimes.com.

Mother grieves for sons killed in Ruskin shootings 11/26/10 [Last modified: Friday, November 26, 2010 11:39pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Tuesday's Nothing More concert moved from the State Theatre to Jannus Live in St. Petersburg

    Blogs

    Nothing More was one of the highlights of April's 98 Rockfest, a thoroughly entertaining rock outfit with a larger-than-live stage presence.

    Nothing More performed at 98 Rockfest 2017 in Tampa.
  2. Buccaneers-Vikings Turning Point, Week 3: Overreaction vs. reality

    Bucs

    "None of us really know how this group of 53 guys is going to come together and how we're going to play this season."

    Vikings receiver Stefon Diggs torched a porous Bucs secondary Sunday with eight catches for 173 yards and two touchdowns. [Getty Images]
  3. Triad Retail Media names Sherry Smith as CEO

    Corporate

    ST. PETERSBURG — Triad Retail Media, a St. Petersburg-based digital ads company, said CEO Roger Berdusco is "leaving the company to pursue new opportunities" and a member of the executive team, Sherry Smith, is taking over.

    Roger Berdusco is stepping down as CEO at Triad Retail Media to pursue other opportunities. [Courtesy of Triad Retail Media]
  4. What to watch this week: Fall TV kicks off with 'Will & Grace,' 'Young Sheldon,' return of 'This Is Us'

    Blogs

    September temperatures are still creeping into the 90s, but fall officially started a few days ago. And with that designation comes the avalanche of new and returning TV shows. The Big Bang Theory fans get a double dose of Sheldon Cooper's nerdisms with the return of the titular series for an eleventh season and …

    Sean Hayes, Debra Messing and Megan Mullally in Will & Grace.
  5. Eight refueling jets from Arkansas, 250 people heading to new home at MacDill

    Macdill

    TAMPA — The number of KC-135 refueling jets at MacDill Air Force Base will grow from 18 to 24 with the return of a squadron that once called Tampa home.

    A KC-135 Stratotanker, a military aerial refueling jet, undergoes maintenance at MacDill Air Force Base. The planes, many flying since the late 1950s, are now being flown more than twice as much as scheduled because of ongoing foreign conflicts. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]