Lancers attend Reis’ memorial

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Megan Benner

UCSD’s memorial for Karen Reis brought tears to the eyes of Carlsbad students.

Megan Benner, Staff Writer

Carlsbad athletes are heartbroken by the murder of local club volleyball coach Karen Reis. Both Karen and her brother David, along with John Reeves and Matthew Saturley, were found dead in a Coronado condo early in the morning on Jan. 1.

Local police are still investigating the scene. But, with what has been released, the death of the Reis siblings and Saturley were homicide and the death of Reeves was a suicide. Police are investigating possible motives including substance use or jealousy.

The Coronado citizens are in shock because the beach community has a clean reputation.

“My family was actually on our way to Coronado for the day when I got the call from a friend,” sophomore Courtney Benner said. “All I could do was cry. Coronado is safe. We were at Seaport Village making our way there without even knowing of the horror.”

Carlsbad students Benner, sophomore Ashlyn Sprinkle and freshman Caitlin Coogan were all a part of Reis’ club volleyball team Genuine located in Velocity Sports Performance on Avenida Encinas. Sprinkle and Benner were on her 15s team.

In Reis’ honor, Genuine is naming their new volleyball court after her.

Reis graduated from UC San Diego in 2009 where volleyball was very much a part of her life. She played all four years at UCSD as an outside hitter. Along with being a coach at Genuine, she also coached JV volleyball at San Dieguito Academy. On Wed., Jan. 4, a candlelight memorial was held at San Dieguito. Many of Reis’ friends, colleagues and players attended.

On Jan. 7, a funeral was held for the Reis siblings in their hometown of Bakersfield.

“We love and miss her so much,” Sprinkle said. “She touched us all.”

On Jan. 12, another memorial was held for Reis at UCSD. Both Benner and Sprinkle attended. A beautiful display of flowers filled the school and many friends wrote letters and brought pictures. A tribute video prepared by Reis’ former UCSD volleyball teammates was also shown.

“My team decided to honor Karen by writing letters to her family about how much Karen personally meant to us. She was like a big sister to me,” Benner said. “The first time I met her I thought she looked like Taylor Swift. We had so much fun at tournaments. We are really going to miss her presence on court.”