We husbands and dads like to think of ourselves as the protectors.
Richard Ramos, 59, knew what he had to do when a man and woman armed with a gun invaded his family’s Las Vegas home while he, his wife and their three children–ages 7, 16, and 19–were all inside.
As the strangers burst in, the man pulled his gun. That’s when Ramos jumped to protect his family.
Ramos struggled with the gunman. The gunman shot and killed the husband and father of four. Ramos’ wife, Julie, was stabbed with a screwdriver.
“He fought for his family so they wouldn’t kill his family, because they almost killed my sister,” Kim Johnston, Julie Ramos’ sister, told the Los Angeles Times. “He literally fought to his death. They shot him and they stabbed him.”
Julie Ramos told the Associated Press: “I want everyone to know that Richard Ramos is the greatest guy in the world, and I don’t want anyone to think he died in vain. He saved his family like the lion that he was.”
She said the attack was “total terror, trauma, violation.”
“I felt raped,” she said. “I had to fight for my life. My husband fought for us to the bitter end. He was shot. He was stabbed. We saw it.”
The home invasion was the final stop of a crime spree perpetrated by 35-year-old Natasha Galenn Jackson and Cody David Winters, 27.
They pulled over to the side of the road on Highway 93/95 while driving a stolen Nissan Altima when Scott Ufert, a Nevada Department of Transportation emergency services workers, stopped to see if they need help.
Winters put a gun to Ufert’s head, robbed him and then loaded their stuff into his van and at gunpoint forced Ufert to drive, according to the police arrest warrant.
A missed turn apparently caused them to stop in a random neighborhood near McCarren International Airport, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The couple got out, took their belongings and allowed Ufert to drive away as long as he promised not to call police.
The duo knocked on the Ramos’ door, asked to use the phone and that’s how they made their way inside.
“I don’t know if they meant to kill anybody going into it,” a police official who was not authorized to speak to media to the Review-Journal.
Johnston told the Los Angeles Times that Richard Ramos’ job was the family’s only source of income.
“He was a great husband, a great father of four,” Johnston said. “He was a very family-oriented man.”
As Richard and Julie Ramos’ youngest son prepares to turn 8 on Sunday, the family struggles to raise money for a funeral. There’s a GoFundMe account created with a goal of $10,000.
There’s also a Facebook page set up in Richard Ramos’ honor.
Writes Erin Corral-Holmes: “Rest in Peace Richard, you are a hero.”