Family hopes CD can help murdered man’s children
By Matt Hanley firstname.lastname@example.org November 23, 2012 6:54PM
Julius Garcia and his aunt Lidia Garcia. Friends of Julius Garcia, who was killed in an unsolved shooting in Aurora Township in January 2011, hope to raise funds for Garcia’s children through the release of his rap album. | submitted
JuJu D’s CD
Anyone who wants more information about the JuJu D CD should e-mail email@example.com or call Kino G at 331-262-0617.
Updated: December 26, 2012 6:03AM
Julius Garcia’s family always appreciated his musical talent, but it wasn’t until after he died that they truly understood his impact.
“He was Aurora famous, no doubt about it,” said Garcia’s cousin, who goes by Kino G. “He touched a lot of people while he was here.”
On Jan. 3, 2011, 19-year-old Garcia was shot and killed in the 400 block of Calhoun Street, in the Moecherville area just outside Aurora city limits. Garcia and two friends had been standing in the driveway at 10:55 p.m., when someone drove by and sprayed the area with bullets.
For months after he was killed in, people would come up to his family: They had rapped with JuJu. JuJu had recorded with them. He was amazing. He’d recorded an entire track off the top of his head. They’d seen him headline in a club. He killed it.
“He just had so much potential,” Kino G said. “He was just better than us. He had that swag to him.”
In fact, when he died, Garcia had been trying to put together some of his songs to get them to a producer. Friends were convinced that with some polish, he’d be famous some day. And after he died, his family found hours of tracks on his computer and hours more that he had recorded with other rappers all over town.
With so much raw material, the family knew they wanted to use the music for something productive, so they picked the most important causes available: helping Garcia’s kids and trying to solve his murder. Although he was still a teenager, Garcia had two children when he died and another on the way.
Garcia was fairly well known in local rap circles before he died. Since he was killed, his songs have attracted lots of views on YouTube. Most of his music is focused on his life Aurora; he dropped his area code and address in several verses. The songs have plenty of adult language and references to gangs, sex, drugs and violence. They’re filled with the bravado of a 19-year-old ready to take on the world. But in other songs, there are glimpses of the pain he’d seen.
In one song, he says he has emotions he can’t even describe but he knew he had to “go through hell to get to heaven.” When Garcia was 4, his mother was killed in a car crash. Garcia was supposed to be in that car, but plans changed just before she left.
“He really mourned her,” said his aunt Lidia Garcia, who took custody of her nephew. “He was sad. He felt alone. I wish he would have seen how much people loved him.”
“He was lost,” Kino G said. “I think he had a lot of pain.”
For the last few months, Garcia’s cousins and friends have working to get the “JuJu D” CD into local stores. Right now, the CD is available at Kiss the Sky in Batavia, Westside Airbrush in Aurora, Arenkills in Aurora and FastTech in Aurora. Half of the proceeds go to a reward. The other half goes to Garcia’s young kids: Hezekiah, Julius and Jeremiah.
Lidia Garcia wants put up a billboard asking for information about the murder. Police said the case is still an open investigation.
“We are still following up on a lot of different pieces of information but are not at a point where we want to say we have suspects in the case,” said Kane County Sheriff’s Lt. Pat Gengler. “We really encourage anyone with information to call because, they may not realize it, but their small piece to the puzzle might just be the break that is needed to solve the case.”
Anyone with information is asked to call detectives at 630-208-2030.
In the meantime, Lidia Garcia says she hopes the CD will lead to some closure. When her sister died, Lidia Garcia tried her best to take care of her nephew.
“I feel like I let her down,” she said, wiping away tears. “Until I die, I’m going to try to do something. He wasn’t a perfect child. He was my child. If nobody cares, we care.”