The dubbing industry is in mourning once again. Luis Alfonso Mendoza was reportedly murdered in his vehicle in the Portales NTE area of Mexico City. He was 55 years old. His wife, Lourdes Adame, and brother-in-law were also tragically killed, according to local outlets.
His death was met with shock and sadness in the industry and community at large.
“Just a couple of days ago we were laughing and now you’re not here… Que alguien me lo explique!” said Mario Castañeda, the voice actor behind Goku. “Luckily you remain in our hearts with your laugh and jokes and memories of so many years.”
If you’ve watched Bugs Bunny, Dexter’s Laboratory, Friends or Big Bang Theory in Spanish in Latin America (European Spanish is dubbed separately), you’ve heard Mendoza adapt the shape and form of his voice to bring life to characters on those shows. Though he’s performed the voice of Carlton Banks on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Joey Tribbiani on Friends, and Daniel LaRusso on the Karate Kid, he is—perhaps most notably—known as young Gohan from Dragon Ball Z.
In addition to acting, Mendoza, his wife Adame and a few of her family members reportedly also offered classes for aspiring voice actors at Artspot in Balboa, Mexico, a small but mighty school they founded.
Several fans used the words of Gohan’s character himself to honor Mendoza, who voiced the character for over 50 years:
Rest in power to a family of greats gone too soon.