Juan Ramon Guerrero was a 22-year old pre-finance major at UCF. On Saturday night, June 11, the decided to go to Pulse nightclub with his boyfriend, Christopher “Drew” Leinonen.

Everything in Juan's life seems to be on track. He had come out to his family, who loved him and accepted him. He was in a stable and happy relationship with a man he loved. He was attending UCF and had a steady job. But in an instant, it was over. All

He would not return.

Robert Guerrero said his cousin worked as a telemarketer. He graduated from Valencia college and then enrolled at UCF. Originally he didn't know what to study, but he decided to major in pre-finance. He wanted to become a financial advisor.

“He was so much love and light,” Aryam Guerrero said to TIME magazine.

Juan Ramon Guerrero had only recently come out to his entire family, the Associated Press found out from Guerrero’s cousin.

“They were very accepting,” said cousin Robert Guerrero.

"He was always this amazing person (and) he was like a big brother to me," Guerrero told the Associated Press. "He was never the type to go out to parties, would rather stay home and care for his niece and nephew."

In an interview with TIME Guerrero's sister said that Juan's parents were one of the first families to learn that their child had died in the shooting.

She rushed to to the hospital with her family,awaiting news about Juan. She said that the family was hopeful. Then she saw the piece of paper. The piece of paper had nine names on it. One of them was Juan's.

“I said, ‘That’s my brother! That’s my brother! Tell me what’s going on.’”

She was then informed that it was the victims list.

She then told TIME that her family was taken into a room and informed by the FBI that Juan was dead.

The families of both Guerrero and Leinonen said that they would be holding a joint funeral for the both of them. According to Guerrero’s sister, she had no doubt that they would have gotten married.

“I lost part of my life,” said Guerrero's father.


Jillian James is the Opinions Editor of the Central Florida FutureShe can be reached at

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