Relatives struggle in aftermath of suspected murder-suicide
By Stefano Esposito Staff Reporter August 15, 2013 8:22PM
Kelly Coca and her daughter, Karla Eguez, were found shot to death in their Little Village home early Tuesday.
Updated: August 16, 2013 1:09AM
An inconsolable Luze Medrano sat at her only son’s hospital bedside Thursday, as a priest came to perform the last rites — before she prepared to bury the young man.
As Medrano and her cousin, Nataly Ortiz, prepared themselves for the grim task ahead, they were also struggling to understand how Juan Eguez could — as police suspect — have killed his wife and 5-year-old daughter in a Little Village home before turning the gun on himself in the early morning hours Tuesday.
“We don’t know what triggered him to do something like that because he wasn’t that person,” said Nataly Ortiz. “He didn’t drink. He wasn’t a person who liked to fight. He was good. He was well educated.”
It makes no sense, Ortiz told the Chicago Sun-Times, because just days before the shootings, Eguez, his wife and their daughter were together at Disney World in Orlando, Fla.
Police found the bodies of Kelly Coca, 28, and the daughter she shared with Eguez, Karla Eguez, inside Coca’s home in the 2800 block of South Kildare. Investigators also found Eguez with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot to the head. Eguez died Wednesday morning at Mount Sinai Hospital, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.
Neighbors reported hearing arguing coming from the home shortly before the sounds of gunshots, police said.
Ortiz said she knew Eguez and his estranged wife had problem — he lived in Florida, she in Chicago — but they recently spent three days at Disney World with their daughter.
“There were no problems, no incidents,” said Ortiz, who lives in West Palm Beach, Fla. “We have a thousand pictures they took together.”
Karla spent a month with her father in Miami, before her mother flew down for the trip to Disney World and the flight back to Chicago, Ortiz said.
Coca returned to Chicago with their daughter late last week. Without telling his relatives, Eguez also made his way to Chicago Monday.
Ortiz said she saw Eguez Monday morning, but he never mentioned he was travelling to the Midwest.
Ortiz said Eguez and Coca met in their native Bolivia. They got married there and came to the United States. He joined the United States Army in February 2010 and was discharged in June of this year, according to military records. At some point, Coca moved to Chicago to be closer to her mother, Ortiz said.