Public House creates memorial site for man slain in South Philadelphia
Center City restaurant and sports bar Public House has created a memorial website for former employee Jose Gabino Aparicio, 22, who was shot and killed in the early morning hours of Sept. 26 during a robbery in South Philadelphia.
Public House staffers wrote that Aparicio was traveling home after his shift, en route to his brother-in-law’s bakery where he regularly picked up bread for his family to eat for breakfast.
The young father was near Eighth and Watkins streets when he was around 4 a.m. confronted by a man who demanded he hand over his backpack.
The assailant allegedly shot him three times in the back following a brief struggle.
The bag contained nothing but Aparicio’s work clothes and a cell phone, according to the site.
Philadelphia police on Oct. 6 arrested suspect Tyreek McNeil, 21, in connection with the crime.
Aparicio’s family is still attempting to raise funds to ship the man’s body back to Mexico for funeral services.
“For those who do not know Jose very well, Jose was not only a barback at Public House, a cook at Byblos and a baker at a neighborhood bakery,” the Donate for Jose site reads. ”He was a father of 3, beloved husband of Dionica Hernandez, a son who left Mexico in search of providing a better life for his family, loyal brother of 4, and most importantly, he was a true friend.”
Staffers wrote that Aparicio worked three jobs to provide for his wife and children and to send money back to Mexico for his family’s ranch. He dreamed of saving up to buy a Harley Davidson motorcycle for his father.
“On top of working 15 hour days, 7 days a week, Jose would find time to spend with friends and family,” the site reads.
“If you ever had a chance to speak with Jose and get to know him, he was an animal loving, family oriented young man that was stepping up to the plate to better his family’s needs before his own, while keeping a never-ending smile.”
Those who wish to donate to Aparicio’s family can do so by contributing to the PayPal account Public House set up. All proceeds will go to Aparicio’s wife, newborn and two children.
“Our goal is to provide the same relationship as Jose provided us,” the site reads.
“A warm, welcoming smile, and open arms to lend a hand in time of need.”