ASTORIA — A Queens man who was fatally stabbed during an altercation on Roosevelt Avenue Saturday was remembered as a dedicated family-man devoted to his young son, relatives told DNAinfo New York on Monday.
Isaac Martinez, 26, died early Saturday morning after being stabbed in the chest, police said. The circumstances of the killing were unclear Monday, but Martinez was reportedly stabbed by a livery cab driver who stopped to pick up the victims.
Family said they are still reeling from the news.
"He was a really great brother, a great father, a great son," said Eunice Martinez, 18, as she stood with her mother, Marta Celio, outside the Astoria apartment where her brother lived with the family, his girlfriend, and his almost 5-year-old son.
"We're in shock still," she said.
Martinez said her brother moved to Queens from Mexico 12 years ago. He started working as a DJ when he was 20, and would spin at local bars, including regular gigs at El Sancho, a bar on Roosevelt Avenue in Jackson Heights.
"He loved music. He loved to exercise," she said.
Family said that when he wasn't working, he was spending time with his son.
"He would just come home and play with his kid and be with family," said Martinez's cousin, Christian Aguirra, 25.
The victim's family said they didn't know many details about Saturday's stabbing, which took place just before 5 a.m. outside a grocery store at 68-10 Roosevelt Ave., in Woodside. Eunice Martinez said her brother and friends had stopped at the bodega to buy beer, then tried to hail a cab home.
Police say the suspect stabbed two men — Martinez and his friend, a 33-year-old who was stabbed in the torso, but survived — before fleeing in a dark older model sedan.
Several news outlets reported that the suspect is a livery cab driver who stopped to pick up the two victims.
The friend who was with Martinez, Carlos Perez, was being treated at Elmhurst Hospital, where he told the New York Post that the cab driver came after them unprovoked with a baseball bat before stabbing them.
Police have released footage of the suspect's car, which they say may have a broken rear windshield. The man is described as dark-haired, between 5-foot-3 and 5-foot-8, weighing between 120 to 170 pounds, and wearing a white t-shirt and blue jeans.
Family members say they want the person responsible to turn himself in.
"If the guy just came out and said that he did it, it would be easier for everyone," Aguirra said. "He's got to pay for it somehow."