VIRGINIA BEACH -- "He was my twin brother. We did everything together. Same birthdays are gonna be toughest," shared Raul Rivera, standing where someone shot Rene Rivera November 17.
"He's my only brother. Great guy, too. Great guy. Good father, a good friend, and a good son," Raul Rivera told 13News.
Rene Rivera made a run to the store in his mother's burgundy minivan. He was on his way back to her house when the shooting that would end his life happened. Police found him and the minivan on Lake Edward Drive near Baker Road.
Rivera moved to his mom's home in Virginia Beach about 3 months ago, becoming the last of his immediate family to relocate to the area from New Jersey and New York.
"It was gonna be our year. We had everybody here for the holidays, finally. Right before Thanksgiving, this happens. We're not gonna be able to share Christmas with him. We're not gonna be able to share New Year's with him. I mean, in spirit, and in thought, and in a memory, we'll always have that, but it's not gonna be the same," said Raul Rivera.
"I really want the guys that did this to get caught, 'cause it's not fair for the family, you know. I know what they've been through. I've lost several cousins of mine because of things like this," said Eduardo Gonzalez who called 9-1-1 the night of the shooting after he heard gunfire outside his apartment.
Gonzalez met Rivera's mother and brother Wednesday.
"I felt really close to them," explained Gonzalez. "I've actually had the experiences like this, and it's not the prettiest thing, you know, especially having to go to the funeral. Seeing all the things, it hurts," Gonzalez said.
Anyone who might have seen Rene Rivera late Saturday, November 17 or who has any information about the shooting can call Virginia Beach Crime Solvers at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP.