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Man who killed son, fiancee suffered pain that ‘broke him,’ mother says

Family, friends mourn slain mother; 911 call shows shootings frightened children

SHARE Man who killed son, fiancee suffered pain that ‘broke him,’ mother says

MURRAY — The funeral for a Murray mother and her 2-year-old son who were shot and killed over the weekend by the woman's fiancee will be held next week.

The services for Jamie Lynn Salazar, 34, and Jordan Reeves, 2, will be held at noon Tuesday at Valley View Funeral Home, 4335 W. 4100 South.

Police say Jordan and his mother were murdered Sunday in their apartment, 224 E. Vantana Court, by Johnathon Reeves, 30, who police say then took his own life. As of Tuesday, police have released little information about what might have sparked the tragic events.

Reeves was a U.S. Army combat veteran who reportedly had worked as a mission gunner.

"He was hurting deep inside," Doris Reeves said of her son in a short email to the Deseret News. "His pain was too great and it broke him."

Salazar's friends and family members continued to mourn their loved one Tuesday and recalled fond memories of her. "More than anything, Jamie was a mother," her sister Melissa Gilham said.

"She was the kind of mother who took walks, played on the swings, did finger paints, hand sewed costumes, made beautiful homemade wall art for their walls, had snowball fights, snuggled on the couch watching movies, and said prayers every night. And she took pics of every step. Jamie was a friend to everyone she ever met. There isn't a person who met her who didn't love her," she recalled fondly.

Gilham said her tender hearted sister "wouldn't even let me squish a spider." She described her as a woman who "had 500 pairs of shoes," but preferred to go barefoot. Her friends also said she was a talented photographer.

"There are hundreds of us that will feel the pain of her absence everyday for the rest of our lives," Gilham said Tuesday.

Family members and friends of Salazar also took to social media to mourn her loss.

"My best friend in the whole world, is gone forever and I can't fix it," commented one woman.

"I can't sleep. I miss her and I feel numb and sad and will never see her smile or laugh or talk about our good times and bad. I know how you both feel. She was my sister, my family. She was (tough) on me but only because she loved me and I will love her always and she will always be with us," wrote another.

Another posted a message to Salazar about a meal she had that night. "I was waiting for you to run up to the table and say something silly and hug me. I miss you so much already. I'm not sure how I'm going to go an entire lifetime without ever hearing your voice or feeling your embrace."

The lone 911 call made that day was released to the Deseret News through a public records request Tuesday. A woman who was baby-sitting two girls in a nearby apartment said the children went outside, but came back a short time later crying.

"The downstairs neighbors are saying that somebody got shot," the unnamed woman told the dispatcher. "I just heard a bunch of screaming and the girls I'm baby-sitting went to go outside and they were told to come back in because somebody got shot."

The baby sitter said she did not hear any gunshots herself, but "I heard a loud bang, sounded like someone throwing something against the wall."

The two girls she was watching said they found three children, a young boy and two older girls, crying on the grass outside. The trio told the other children that someone had been shot inside and they needed to go back their own apartments.

"Are you OK? You're not OK?" the baby sitter can be heard on the 911 recording as she tries to comfort the girls she is tending.

"I'm just scared he's going to come in," the little girl sobs.

The baby sitter can be heard reassuring the girl that the door is locked.

Salazar's two girls and a boy from a previous marriage — ages 8 through 11 — were also in their apartment Sunday when the killings occurred. Those children are now with their biological father.

Reeves had a prior history of domestic violence, threatening in August to kill his family. He was arrested and charged with multiple counts of aggravated assault. Reeves was placed in the veteran's treatment program, designed to help those who have returned from their tour of duty and get in trouble with the law. Many of the court's participants are also battling post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injuries, mental illness or addiction.

Those familiar with Reeves' case say he was as close to a model participant as could be found. His drug tests were clean. He was attending all his court hearings and treatment sessions. And he was helping other veterans, according to court officials.

Friends said Reeves was a combat veteran with multiple deployments who loved his family.

"He was a good, kind hearted, talented young man. I don't know why war affects even the best of men this way, but he truly was the best of men," one man told the Deseret News.

The man, a friend of Reeves' family, added: "We are grieving so greatly. The loss of Jamie, Johnathon and their precious child! Post-traumatic stress is the issue. How do we help these wonderful men and women veterans?

"All his family and friends knew his kind heart. He was a good man and that is evident in that he was doing so well in treatment. He really was the guy that would help someone broke down on the side of the road, or feed you if you were hungry."

Email: preavy@deseretnews.com

Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam