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Long Beach Poly grad with newborn twins killed in Las Vegas shooting, friend says

By in Press Enterprise on October 3, 2017

By Jeremiah Dobruck

A Long Beach native with newborn twins was killed Sunday in the Las Vegas mass shooting that took at least 59 lives, according to one of the man’s friends.

Johnathan Paumonte, 30, was with his aunt among thousands of concertgoers at the Route 91 Harvest Festival when a gunman started raining bullets on the crowd, Junior Montanez said.

The gunfire hit Paumonte and his aunt, according to Montanez. He died at the scene, and his aunt remains hospitalized, Montanez said.

“His wife called me at 2 o’clock in the morning crying her eyes out that John passed away that he was shot at the concert,” he said.

A month ago, Paumonte’s wife, Julisa, gave birth to twins, a boy and a girl, according to Montanez.

“It’s just so surreal,” Montanez said. “I just wish that it was fake news for me.”

Puamonte’s family and close friends called him Lil’ John John, according to Montanez who grew up with him in Long Beach.

“He was my best friend,” Montanez said. “He was more of a brother than anything. We grew up together since we were 3.”

The two faced off in high school sports with Montanez playing baseball and football for Lakewood High School and Paumonte playing baseball, basketball and football for Long Beach Poly High School, according to Montanez.

Paumonte then attended Cal State Long Beach, where he graduated with a master’s degree, Montanez said.

The two friends moved to Las Vegas together around 2010, and Paumonte began building an architecture business, according to Montanez.

Montanez eventually moved away, but Paumonte stayed and started a family.

“100 percent he would’ve been an awesome father,” Montanez said. “I promise you, I’ll make sure their kids will know who their dad was and what kind of a person he was.”

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