LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - The family of a Lubbock man killed in a crash speaks out about the life that was taken in Thursday's accident. Julio Ruvalcaba's family is asking for your prayers. They say the father, former Marine and friend will be missed by many.
"It's really hard to say goodbye to a good person," says Cynthia Ruvalcaba as she is forced to say goodbye to her brother. "He was a great guy, very happy person. He'd always try to make us laugh." She adds that his presence brought sunshine into many of their family members lives.
Julio Ruvalcaba, 27, was a correctional officer at the John Montford Unit. He was on his way back to Lubbock to pick up his two-year-old son Isaac Thursday when police say he was ejected from his car on the Slaton Highway. He was pronounced dead at University Medical Center.
"My brother was a good father," she says and a good Marine. "He joined the Marines and risked his life. He went to war, and fought in Iraq," she says. After six years as a reservist based in Lubbock, Ruvalcaba made the decision not to re-enlist so he could spend more time with his family.
His family says he fought for freedom, and even after his death, he continued to fight for other peoples lives by being an organ donor. "He decided to give his organs so other people could have a chance at life," says Cynthia Ruvalcaba about her brother. She says his legacy will live on. "Part of my brother will be in them, and he's going to be shinning through," she says.
Ruvalcaba says she and her family will miss everything about Julio and that if he were here she knows what he'd say, "Be strong for younger brothers and my mother and to look after them like he did us," says Ruvalcaba's younger sister Cynthia.
A memorial fund has been set up in honor of Julio Ruvalcaba at Lubbock National Bank in his name. The funeral will be Wednesday at St. Joseph's Catholic Church on North Avenue P at 10 a.m.
* Corrected: Funeral is at 10 am, not 2 pm.
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The accident occurred around 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the intersection of Slaton Highway and Olive Avenue, just outside the South Loop. More>>