Family remembers Jaclyn Welcome, woman killed in shooting near downtown Anchorage
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Three days after a deadly shooting near downtown Anchorage, the family of Jaclyn Welcome is speaking out about the tragedy that took her life.
“There are no words, (that) I can describe the pain that we feel,” said Desiree Montenegro, Welcome’s sister.
Montenegro said Welcome loved her family and friends, and her children. She died after being shot along with four others in the early morning hours of June 19. A 21-year-old man has been arrested and charged in connection with the incident. He faces several charges, including first-degree murder.
Her family says Welcome fell on some rough times and became homeless about three years ago.
“We all looked for her. We all always, you know ... she always checked in with us, with all of us,” Montenegro said. “She always wanted to know how family was doing. She lost touch for a little while.”
Montenegro said family members would check in with her sister and always told her she was always welcome to come home and stay with family.
“Her response was, ‘I just want to be reconnected with family, but I don’t know how. I feel lost. This (being homeless) is what I know,’” Montenegro said.
Montenegro says her sister also battled depression. One of the last times Montenegro saw Welcome was to tell her that their younger brother had died in May. She wanted to let Welcome know that his funeral was going to be held in June. Montenegro said she finally found her sister to tell her the news, but it was the day after his funeral.
Montenegro said her sister cried on her shoulder. She recalled one of the last times they spoke.
“I told her, ‘remember, don’t be afraid,’” Montenegro said. “Don’t be afraid to reach out, and don’t be afraid to tell us your hungry or cold. Come home.”
Montenegro said these past few weeks have been hard, but that their family will get through it together.
“It’s hard to say what we want when she is not here anymore,” she said. “We just want her back, and we’re not going to get that. There’s no amount of justice that’s going to help that.”
A GoFundMe account has been set up by the family to help with the funeral and memorial services.
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