Tributes and memorials to Junior Guzman-Feliz continue to grow

BELMONT, The Bronx — The tributes to Junior Guzman-Feliz keep coming, and the votive candle memorial at the site of the brutal attack continues to grow, a week and a half after the heinous, fatal crime.

Families who spoke with PIX11 News, including members of Guzman-Feliz's own family, said that the best way to ensure that justice for Junior is achieved is to keep the memory of him alive.

"Everybody loved him," said Leandra Feliz, Junior's mother. "His [friends] who loved him, all of them missing him," she told PIX11 News.

A sure sign that the 15-year-old, who was severely attacked in a case of mistaken identity, is missed was the steady stream of people appearing at the candle memorial, candles in hand, and lighting them.

Many visitors at the memorial on Friday afternoon were from outside of this neighborhood, some quite far away.

"Just now," said Doris Maldonado, after lighting and placing her candle among the thousands of that fill up a block and a half of sidewalk. "We just came from, we're talking Utica, New York."

Maldonado was on site with her daughter, Angelina, and next to them was a family from East Hartford, Connecticut, paying respects.

"We felt we needed to be here," Maldonado said. "You know it just gave me the chills, looking at [the memorial] on TV. I just wanted to be here."

In addition to the candlelight memorial, two different murals are being painted in the area near the tragic stabbing scene.

Also, on Thursday, the New York Yankees, Junior's favorite sports team, paid tribute to him at their celebrity softball game by showing his image on the Jumbotron. Hall of Famers in attendance wore uniform patches with Lesandro "Junior" Guzman-Feliz's initials emblazoned on them.

There's also an electronic billboard next to the Brucker Expressway, one of the busiest highways in the country.

Those are among many tributes, all of which Guzman-Feliz's mother finds heartening. "That support makes me feel much better," Leandra Feliz told PIX11 News. "It brings me some peace, a little. I feel so nice with the support and the love of everyone."