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Fresno Victim's Father: 'Xy is a Child of the City'
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By David Taub, Senior Reporter
Published 5 years ago on
November 20, 2019

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The family of Xy Lee can’t believe their beloved is gone.
“Everything hurts. There are no words to describe how I’m feeling,” Kou Lee, Xy’s brother said Wednesday through an interpreter. “I cannot accept that my brother passed away.”
Lee, a 23-year old singer well-known in the international Hmong community, was one of four men to die in a Sunday evening quadruple homicide in southeast Fresno.


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Kou talked about his brother’s passion for playing music. They’ve received condolences from fans around the world.

City Gathers Money for Victims’ Funds


“I may be the father of Xy, but Xy is a child of the city.” Xai Pao Lee, father of Xy Lee
Meanwhile, Mayor Lee Brand and members of the city council encouraged the Fresno community to contribute to a GoFundMe account established to help the families of the victims with funeral and other costs. They were flanked at a City Hall news conference by several members of the Hmong community.
“With a heavy heart, I’m here today as my job as leader of this city to recognize this tragedy and try to make sense of it, to honor the victims, to find a way for the city to move forward,” Brand said. “(The victims were) shooting stars that never got to realize their potential.”
So far, $30,000 has been raised for the victims’ account, which included donations from council members, as well as local businesses. The goal is to raise $500,000.
“We need to do more for the community that is experiencing deep pain and suffering,” Councilman Miguel Arias said.
The funds will be managed by The Fresno Center, a nonprofit focused on helping new immigrants.
Pao Yang, the Fresno Center’s CEO, said his community is ailing.
“Our entire Hmong community in the country is mourning and heartbroken by this senseless, heartless, and evil act of violence,” Yang said.
Officials also urged Fresnans to donate blood.
A poster asks for donations to a fund for victims of Sunday’s shooting. (City of Fresno)

Increasing Crime Stoppers Reward

On Friday, the city council will hold a special meeting to vote on adding $40,000 to the Crime Stoppers reward fund for a tip that leads to an arrest in the case. The contribution will come from $5,000 in funds from each of the city’s seven council districts, plus the mayor’s office.

The reward now stands at $15,000, with $5,000 coming each from Crime Stoppers (initial reward), and the budgets of Assemblyman Jim Patterson and councilwoman Esmeralda Soria.
“I’m very happy that the elected officials and community are coming together to support the family. I may be the father of Xy, but Xy is a child of the city,” his father Xai Pao Lee said through an interpreter.

Police Investigation Continues

Fresno police say two gunmen targeted a family gathering at 5300 block of E. Lamona Avenue Sunday around 8 p.m. They entered through a side gate and opened fire, striking ten men and killing four, before fleeing.
No arrests have been made. There were no updates as of Wednesday afternoon.
Lee, 31-year old Phia Vang, 38-year old Kou Xiong and 40-year old Kalaxang Thao died.
Police have not been able to confirm a motive, but are not ruling anything out, including possible retaliation. Chief Andy Hall said that some of the partygoers were involved in a “disturbance” previously. Hall did not elaborate what that meant. He also said it did not appear any of the victims were involved in gangs.
Kou said his brother was not involved in any gang activities. His family is anxious for police to find the killers.

Link to Make Donations

Click here to link to the Go Fund Me page to help the victims’ families.

A Central California Blood Center truck collects donations in front of Fresno City Hall on Nov. 20, 2019 (GV Wire/Jamie Ourverson)

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David Taub,
Senior Reporter
Curiosity drives David Taub. The award-winning journalist might be shy, but feels mighty with a recorder in his hand. He doesn't see it his job to "hold public officials accountable," but does see it to provide readers (and voters) the information needed to make intelligent choices. Taub has been honored with several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. He's just happy to have his stories read. Joining GV Wire in 2016, Taub covers politics, government and elections, mainly in the Fresno/Clovis area. He also writes columns about local eateries (Appetite for Fresno), pro wrestling (Off the Bottom Rope), and media (Media Man). Prior to joining the online news source, Taub worked as a radio producer for KMJ and PowerTalk 96.7 in Fresno. He also worked as an assignment editor for KCOY-TV in Santa Maria, California, and KSEE-TV in Fresno. He has also worked behind the scenes for several sports broadcasts, including the NCAA basketball tournament, and the Super Bowl. When not spending time with his family, Taub loves to officially score Fresno Grizzlies games. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Taub is a die-hard Giants and 49ers fan. He graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. Go Blue! You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email

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