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Family heartbroken after relative is shot and killed, search for suspect continues

HOUSTON – A heartbroken family gathers and grieves after their loved was killed early Monday morning.

Rene Cantu, 34, was out for a late-night jog when he was shot and killed near Richmond Road and Montrose Boulevard, his family says.

“I try to be strong but it’s hard. It’s hard. It really is. The pain that we have right now, it’s unbearable. It really is,” said the victim’s cousin Roland Castillo.

So far, Houston police say no suspects have been arrested in the case and a motive remains unclear.

“What reason? He had his phone on him. He had his earbuds on him. What reason would this person kill my cousin? What reason?” Castillo questioned.

Cantu was a University of Texas graduate and a University of Houston employee who worked at the university’s division of research.

Relatives say he was a kind person with a bright future that was cut short.

“Very good person. Very big-hearted. Loving. Quiet and always ready to help out,” Castillo said.

As the devastated family now plans their loved one’s memorial service, they also pray the person responsible for his death is caught soon.

“It’s just crazy to me that someone will take somebody else’s life without thinking of their family. The pain that is causing all of us,” said Castillo.

The family has since set up a GoFundMe page to help with funeral expenses. If you’d like to help, visit here.

The University of Houston released a statement regarding the death of Cantu:

The Cougar family is mourning the loss of Rene Cantu, a brilliant writer and communications coordinator in the UH Division of Research. He was a hard-working team player with an amazing sense of humor that came out through his written word. During this difficult time, our thoughts are with Rene’s family and all who are affected by this devastating loss.

If you have any information about the case, you’re urged to contact HPD Homicide Division at 713-308-3600 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.


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