Thursday, February 16, 2017

Luis Daniel Conde's mother and sister share memories.

Luis Daniel Conde, 39, went to the same high school in San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico as his future husband Juan Pablo Rivera Velazquez. Together they ran Alta Peluquería D'Magazine, a beauty salon in Kissimmee, they co-owned the business for about seven years, and they were a couple for 14 years. On June 12, 2016 they died together in the Pulse night club massacre. They were celebrating a friend's birthday.

Luis's mother and sisters arrived at the Orange County Regional History Center, (65 E Central Blvd, Orlando, FL 32801) with a large framed photo of Luis. The interview was conducted in Spanish which unfortunately I don't understand. The emotions of loss however are universal transcending language barriers.

Luis's mother, Maria, wearing a T Shirt with a photo of her son on it, wanted to share what made her son so unique. She had just moved to Central Florida from Puerto Rico, so she only had six months with her son before the shooting. "He was just love." she said. He had a way of making clients at the Kissimmee beauty salon feel special. He loved to take before an after shots of clients to show their transformation. He worked to make people in his community feel beautiful. Luis was affectionately referred to as his mother's "favorite prince."

Luis's sister,  Lynette, had a premonition one month before the shooting. The vivid dream depicted events leading up to her brother's death. As events occurred after June 12, it was as if it were all unfolding, as in the dream. One of Luis's co-workers called Lynette, saying, "Something bad has happened." For two days the family went back and forth to the hospital hoping to find out if Luis was alive. That is an eternity to remain in the dark with only a glimmer of hope. He ultimately died from multiple gun shot wounds

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