MEMPHIS – Erano Catap Santos, a male Filipino nurse was shot dead at the parking lot of an apartment complex in Memphis, Tennessee, where witnesses say that he had been fighting with an unidentified person.
According to reports by Balitang America, authorities found Santos’ body on Saturday afternoon, July 20, by Stonebridge Crossing Apartments, where he lived.
The 33-year-old victim was a native of Pampanga, Philippines, and worked at a health care facility in Memphis.
Santos was described by Balitang America as someone who “loved traveling to new places” and “tasting the good life.”
Witnesses supposedly told authorities that they saw Santos engaged in a fight with an unidentified person in the parking lot.
His opponent then shot Santos down before taking his vehicle, a four-door 2013 Honda Civic. Authorities are reportedly pursuing efforts to locate the killer and Santos’ car.
Relatives and friends of the victim were devastated over the news of Santos’ death.
Christopher Pineda, a college buddy now based in New Jersey, said that he was really shocked over the tragic death.
“Hindi ako makapaniwala na nangyari ito sa kaibigan namin, and it’s so tragic na binaril siya,” Pineda told Balitang America.
For Rizalynn Lacanilao-Santos, another friend of the victim, said that she could not believe the reports that there was an altercation between Santos and the perpetrator. Rizalynn, now based in San Jose, California, said that it was “not in the nature” of Santos to fight.
Santos’ aunt, Lourdes Likes, , said that the incident should not have resulted in the death of her nephew.
“Sana, kinuha na lang yung car, diba? Sana kinuha lang, hindi na lang siya pinatay,” she said.
Balitang America reported that Santos waited seven years before he was able to fly to America early last year, with the sole purpose of supporting his siblings who remained back home in Pampanga.
Whatever the case maybe, Santos’ friends and family were one in the sentiment that the suspect must be held accountable for the murder of Erano.
The Philippine Embassy in Washington, D.C. Issued a statement on Saturday, July 27, condemning the “senseless killing.”
Ambassador Jose L. Cuisia confirmed in the statement that the embassy had already been informed of the shooting death and that it is coordinating with Memphis police with regards to the case.
“We grieve with Mr. Santos’ loved ones and join them in condemning this senseless killing,” Cuisia said. “We are confident that authorities will be able to bring to justice whoever is behind Mr. Santos’ death.”
The embassy also said that it is already in touch with Santos’ aunt, Likes, and that it will extend “all possible assistance” in facilitating the repatriation of the victim’s remains to the Philippines.
(LA Midweek July 31 – August 2, 2013 Sec A pg.1)