Tralona Bartkowiak, Boulder Shooting Victim, Grew Up In The San Fernando Valley

After learning that his cousin's car was parked at the King Soopers in Boulder, Colorado during Monday's shooting, David said he watched hours of coverage. It wasn't until 3:30 a.m. that he learned Tralona Bartkowiak had been killed.

Video Transcript

- Tragedy in Boulder has hit one local family especially hard. One of the victims once lived in Simi Valley. KCAL 9's Jeff Nguyen spoke with a relative who shared memories of a kind and loving Boulder business owner who never forgot her ties to Southern California.

- This is me as a little boy and her as probably like 20-year-old.

JEFF NGUYEN: David, who only wants to go by his first name, is a cousin of Tralona Bartkowiak.

- The best, the most enlightened you've ever seen in your life, met in your life, N held in your arms in your life.

JEFF NGUYEN: The 49-year-old is one of the 10 victims in yesterday's deadly rampage in Boulder, Colorado. David grew up in the same San Fernando Valley home as Bartkowiak who was 19 years older.

- She helped raise me. She was always there for me and that it's just really sad that she's gone. It's unbelievable. She had the biggest heart. She is the most loving person I've ever met in my life. And this is so devastating.

JEFF NGUYEN: Family friend Daniel grew up down the street.

- Every time you saw her, she had a smile on her face. She never-- I don't think I ever saw her angry.

JEFF NGUYEN: Bartkowiak's cousin says she was a gifted artist who moved to Colorado about a dozen years ago to run the family's clothing line business.

- She was the backbone of this family. She's the backbone of that company.

JEFF NGUYEN: He chose to wear this outfit to honor her work. David says he watched hours of coverage yesterday after the family learned his cousin's car was parked at the store where the mass shooting happened.

- We just all had our fingers crossed throughout the whole night. And then around 3:30 AM, I got the phone call that the coroner reached out to her mother. And her mother ended up calling me.

JEFF NGUYEN: The loss has been painful because Bartkowiak was always the peacemaker in the family.

- She was the go-to to talk to you and always squashed the issue.

JEFF NGUYEN: Her cousin says she had been happier than she'd ever been after getting engaged recently. Jeff Nguyen, KCAL News.

- And another victim with California ties is 61-year-old Kevin Mahoney. He lived in LA County until the mid-1990s. His daughter, who works in radio and lives in Carmel, tweeted this picture today saying, "I am heartbroken to announce that my Dad, my hero, Kevin Mahoney, was killed in the King Soopers shooting in my hometown of Boulder, CO. My dad represents all things Love. I'm so thankful he could walk me down the aisle last summer."