School employee dies after breaking up student fight

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A Pinellas County School is mourning the loss of a longtime employee after he was rushed to the hospital and died shortly after breaking up a fight between students. 

Westgate Elementary School's building manager, 64-year old Jaime LaQuian, died after suffering an apparent heart attack during the incident with the students.

His family is now coming to terms with his loss.

LaQuian came to the United States from the Philippines. He was a father of five and worked as the building manager at Westgate Elementary for 15 years.

Friday was his final day.

"Two kids had some sort of fight at school. He tried to help another teacher at school break it off," Jaime's daughter, Francesca Dave said Tuesday.

His family said surveillance video from inside the school cafeteria showed him crumbling to the ground just after the two students were escorted out. His daughter said he was having a heart attack.

"I'm not blaming anybody. I want to, but I'm not because this was his job. That's what he would do," Dave said.

LaQuian, known by coworkers and students as Mr. Jaime, had a known heart condition his family believes was aggravated by the incident. He was rushed to the hospital and passed away on Sunday.

His family said he died doing what he loved, protecting and providing for his second family at school.

Co-workers said he was an integral part of Westgate's close-knit community. He had a personality that will be impossible to replace.

"He truly was part of our family and he will be very, very much missed," Westgate third-grade teacher Maragaret Goodwin said Tuesday.

LaQuian's wake was being planned for Thursday, May 5. The funeral will be held on Friday at 10 a.m., at St. Paul's Catholic Church in St. Petersburg.