By CBSLA Staff

COMPTON (CBSLA) — Brought together in grief by the death of a beloved special needs teacher, a Compton community is mourning an unexpected loss.

Family, friends and loved ones of 55-year-old Jaime Perez met for a vigil on Sunday night to honor the father-of-four, son, brother, husband, and father-figure to the community.

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“He was just an amazing teacher,” said his former student Alex Carillo.

Perez was a special education science teacher for 25 years with the Compton Unified School District.

“The thing I’ll miss the most, I’m sure on campus is his love for our students there, you know, his love for our students,” said teacher assistant Jackie Hankins.

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He was killed last Tuesday morning during what the family said was an apparent carjacking.

Perez was killed after chasing two men who shot at him moments after he got in his car parked outside his home.

He had a love for his students, and a love of the desert, where he invited many people on his Joshua Tree adventures.

“One of the things that will stay with me the most was his patience and I think I will try to, because of him I’ll try to be a lot more patient than usual,” Carillo said.

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As police continue to look for the suspects in this case, Perez’s fellow teachers say they’re planning a special tribute for him later this week.