Remembering the victims of Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting on 1-year anniversary of tragedy

Trevor Irby, Keyla Salazar, Stephen Romero. Join us as we remember the three people killed at the 2019 Gilroy Garlic Festival.

Julian Glover Image
Wednesday, July 29, 2020
Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting victims remembered 1 year later
Gilroy city leaders gathered at the site of the mass shooting to honor the three victims who were fatally shot by a 19-year-old gunman one year ago.

GILROY, Calif. (KGO) -- Gilroy city leaders came together Tuesday to remember the three people killed one year ago during the 41st annual garlic festival.

Tuesday morning, city leaders gathered at Christmas Hill Park -- the site of the mass shooting -- to honor the three victims who were fatally shot by a 19-year-old gunman one year ago.

The event was closed to the public.

Gilroy Mayor Rolan Velasco praised his community for having heart and coming together in the year since the deadly attack.

A moment of silence was held to remember 6-year-old Stephen Romero, 13-year-old Keyla Salazar, and 25-year-old Trevor Irby.

VIDEO: Remembering the victims of the Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting

Here's what we know about the three young victims who lost their lives after a shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival.

Following the moment of silence, a "Gilroy Strong" flag was raised in Christmas Hill Park -- flying just below the California state flag.

"Today we raised the Gilroy Strong flag to represent the strength and resilience each and every one of you has shown this last year," said Mayor Velasco, "This flag represents our collective spirit and desire to rise above senseless acts of violence. Gilroy has heart."

The Garlic Festival is a staple in the Gilroy community and has raised millions for local nonprofits over its history, stretching 41 years.

The city originally planned to "claim victory" over the shooting, as Mayor Velasco said, by holding the festival again this year, but those plans were pushed aside because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The festival is scheduled to return July 2021.

Gilroy Strong Resiliency Center will hold another remembrance ceremony at 5 p.m at Christmas Hill Park. Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen is expected to deliver remarks.

The event is restricted to just 60 people attending due to current shelter-in-place guidelines. Check back here to watch the event, or on our Facebook and YouTube pages.

On July 28, 2019, a gunman, identified as 19-year-old Gilroy resident Santino William Legan, opened fire on the crowds during the last day of the festival. He died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Remembering the Victims:

Stephen Romero:

The grandmother of a 6-year-old killed during the shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival is remembering her grandson as a "loving boy."

The 6-year-old was at the annual food festival with his mother and grandmother, who were both hospitalized.

Stephen's grandmother, Marivel Romero, remembers him as an all-around good kid who was loved by everybody.

Keyla Salazar:

The family of 13-year-old Keyla Salazar shared stories about who Keyla was, during a scheduled press conference on Tuesday.

The bright, young 13-year-old would've celebrated her 14th birthday one week from the shooting. Strong, smart, beautiful, and vibrant were just a few words family and friends used to describe Keyla.

She was described by many as "Sunshine." She's a young woman who family said spent the morning of the shooting cleaning and completing chores to convince her parents to buy her a puppy.

Family members said she was the first to stand up when she heard gunfire. They said she turned to look for family, that's when she was shot.

Trevor Irby

The parents of 25-year-old Trevor Irby recalled the heartwrenching moment they got a phone call telling them their son was killed in a shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival.

According to his parents, 25-year-old Trevor had many dreams, including to become a father one day. His girlfriend Sarah, who he considered his fiancéé, was with him during the shooting and escaped.

When asked how they want Trevor to remembered, Tammy answered, "I want people to remember Trevor as the kindest person you'll ever find. He would never hurt anybody."

"The last thing I said to Trevor was, 'Trevor I love you,'" said Tammy Williams said. "He said, 'Mom I love you. I'm having a good time, I'll call you tomorrow.' Well, my call tomorrow never came. That call for me was getting in the plane to bring him home and bury him."

The call came from an officer instead, telling her that her son had been killed.

Trevor's father describes Irby as his best friend and the perfect son.

Trevor's brother died 26 years ago and his grandfather died one month before the Gilroy shooting.