Santa Monica shooting victims remembered as committed to family

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Courtesy of The Los Angeles Times

VICTIM001Friends and family of Carlos and Marcela Franco gathered on Sunday evening to remember a father and daughter who were gunned down during the violent rampage in Santa Monica on Friday.

Marcela’s aunt Margaret Quinones-Perez said her niece was outgoing and curious. An aspiring clinical psychologist, she was known to greet strangers with a disarming smile and a series of penetrating questions. “To us she was radiant, so beautiful and sassy,” Quinones-Perez said

She described Carlos Franco as a man who took great pride in providing for his family. Carlos rarely showed emotion, said Quinones-Perez, preferring instead to show love by putting food on the dinner table and paying college tuitions.

VICTIM002But as the family gathered in the hospital Friday awaiting news of Marcela Franco’s fate, Leticia, her mother, checked her voicemail. There was an unusual message from Carlos, who had called her shortly before a gunman sprayed his SUV with bullets.”I’m running a little late,” Carlos said in the message. “But I want you to know that I still love you.”

Marcela Franco’s brother died in a freak car accident with a wrong-way driver two years ago.

Santa Monica College is collecting donations to help the Franco family pay for the funerals for Carlos and Marcela Franco.

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