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Twenty years later, anonymous donor assures murdered 3-year-old boy, Adam Gomez, will not be forgotten

May 24, 2019

SCOTTSBLUFF — Through the donation of an anonymous donor, a tree was planted in memory of Adam Gomez in Bea Lovell park on Thursday. Gomez’s family took turns filling the dirt around the tree before placing the mulch on top to give the tree its best chance to grow.

City of Scottsbluff Park Board Member Carolyn Escamilla reached out to Crystal Venegas, Gomez’s aunt, to let her know a donation was made and plans were being arranged for a tree and a memorial stone to be planted in the park. After getting in touch with Patricia Tarin, Gomez’s mother, everyone agreed it was a good idea. Tarin said she was touched by the gesture.

“I thought it was nice to know he was not forgotten after all these years,” Tarin said.

Gomez was three years old when he was murdered in 1999. His family described him as a little boy who had an infectious smile.

“He was always happy and joyful,” Tarin said.

Dan Marshall, park board member, said the day was made possible because of the generosity of the anonymous donor.

“This is an excellent way of honoring Adam,” Marshall said. “To have a live plant is a wonderful gift, especially having it in a park where Adam may have played in.”

Marshall thanked his fellow park board members Kasandra Lauder, Larry Cooper, Meghan Haywood and Escamilla for helping to organize the day. As he looked around the park, Marshall said the park was more than just the playground equipment.

“It’s about people and our citizens and Adam and all of you,” Marshall said. “I hope you all will come by over the years and remember Adam.”

Tarin said it meant a lot to her that, even after 20 years, Gomez has not been forgotten. Venegas plans to visit the park often.

“He touched so many lives,” Venegas said. “This gives hope to so many people.”

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