THE BRONX — The mother of slain Bronx teen Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz was gratified Saturday by the renaming of a Little League field where her son once played on East 181st Street in the Bronx.
The honor was bestowed one day before the third anniversary of her son’s murder by a mob of Trinitarios gang members.
“My son is going to be remembered forever,” Leandra Feliz, Junior’s mother, told PIX11 News Saturday evening. “I feel very honored.”
Junior was only 15 years old and finishing his sophomore year of high school when he was chased by the pack of Trinitarios on June 20, 2018. He ran for blocks and tried to seek shelter in a bodega on Bathgate Avenue, before he was dragged out and stabbed with knives and a machete
“It feels like only a week since the tragedy of my son,” Feliz said Saturday. “It doesn’t feel like three years. I feel like it just happened.”
Five gang members were convicted of Junior’s murder in 2019 and sentenced to long prison terms. Two accused leaders of the Los Sures set in the gang are facing a second trial, which was delayed by the pandemic. Six other men face a third murder trial.
Leandra Feliz has spent the last three years making sure the world doesn’t forget her son. The mom proudly posed Saturday by the new sign affixed to the fence of Quarry Ballfields at 181st Street and LaFontaine Avenue, where the park has been spruced up.
The renovation was sponsored by former Yankee CC Sabathia’s organization, which he runs with his wife, Amber, called the PitCCh In Foundation.
The sign says “dedicated to the memory of Lesandro ‘Junior’ Guzman-Feliz.”
Feliz sent PIX11 News an old, team photo showing Junior wearing his blue, Little League uniform when he was a child, with a black circle around her son’s image to let organizers know where he stood among the players.
She also sent a picture of Junior’s Little League trophy.
Junior was a huge baseball fan, and he was buried in June 2018 wearing his beloved New York Yankees shirt.
The still-grieving mom worries about the explosion of violence in the city, punctuated by increased gunfire.
“It has been worse and worse and worse,” she said.
Leandra Feliz has been a big supporter of Camp Junior, which was funded with support from the Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz and New York State, as an investment in local youth.
“We need to have somebody help the community,” she said.