CRIME

2 families lost multiple loved ones in the Texas outlet mall shooting

May 8, 2023, 4:22 PM | Updated: May 21, 2023, 4:24 pm

Carson Smith prays Sunday at a memorial next to Allen Premium Outlets. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images via...

Carson Smith prays Sunday at a memorial next to Allen Premium Outlets. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images via CNN)

(Joe Raedle/Getty Images via CNN)

(CNN) — A family of four became a family of one when a 6-year-old’s parents and brother were fatally shot by a gunman at a Texas outlet mall Saturday, a GoFundMe post by the family’s friends said.

The Houston office of the South Korean Consulate confirmed Monday that three Korean Americans — husband Cho Kyu Song, 37, and wife, Kang Shin Young, 35, as well as one of their children — were killed in the shooting, according to the Dallas Morning News. The child’s name and age were not given.

“Cindy, Kyu and three year old James were among those victims that tragically lost their lives and the family is in deep mourning,” a GoFundMe post read, written by friends of the family, referring to the family by their American names. “After being released from the ICU, their six year old son William is the only surviving member of this horrific event.”

At least seven others were injured before the gunman was killed by an Allen police officer who was already at the retail center on an unrelated call, police said.

It is one of more than 200 mass shootings in the U.S. so far this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive, which like CNN defines a mass shooting as one in which four or more people are shot, not including the shooter. People going about their daily lives in schoolsparksgrocery stores and medical buildings in communities big and small must now grapple with the trauma and grief that lingers when the shooting stops.

Here’s what we know so far about those killed in the Texas shooting:

The Cho family

The Cho family was at the mall for a day that should have been “filled with light, love and celebration,” but ended in tragedy, according to the GoFundMe campaign.

William, who just celebrated his birthday, lost his mother, father and younger brother in the shooting, according to the post.

Daniela and Sofia Mendoza

Sisters Daniela and Sofia Mendoza were both elementary school students in the Wylie Independent School District, according to a letter sent to parents by the district.

Daniela was in fourth grade and her sister was in second grade, the letter said. Their mother, Ilda Mendoza, is in the hospital in critical condition.

“Words cannot express the sadness we feel as we grieve the loss of our students,” the letter reads. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the Mendoza family, the families of the victims, and all those affected by this senseless tragedy.”

Cox Elementary School Principal Krista Wilson described the sisters as “rays of sunshine” in the letter.

“Daniela and Sofia will not be forgotten,” the letter read. “Hug your kids, and tell them you love them.”

The school district says it is not announcing the news to the students and is leaving it up to parents to have that conversation with their children. Counseling services are being offered for students, staff and families, the letter said.

“Please hold the Mendoza family close to your heart. We know in times of tragedy, our community rallies around each other, and we will do all we can to support the family and friends of the precious students we lost.”

Christian LaCour

Christian LaCour was a well-liked security guard at the outlets.

“Christian was a sweet, caring young man who was loved greatly by our family,” his sister Brianna Smith told CNN.

Christian LaCour was a well-liked security guard at the outlet. (Brianna Smith via CNN)

The 20-year-old was “the kind of person who would just walk into the store and everyone in the room would light up because he was there,” said Max Weiss, a mall store employee.

“Every time he was in the store, it felt safer,” Weiss added. “He brought laughter and joy and always knew what to say.”

Aishwarya Thatikonda

Aishwarya Thatikonda was killed while visiting the mall with a friend, CNN affiliate WFAA reported.

Thatikonda was a few days away from turning 28, Ashok Kolla, a spokesperson with the Telugu Association of North America (TANA) told CNN. The organization helps the Telugu community in the United States.

Family and friends described Thatikonda as a loving and hard-working person who was respected by co-workers, Kolla said.

Thatikonda worked as an engineer, a family representative told WFAA.

She moved to the United States about five years ago to pursue her master’s degree, Kolla said.

Thatikonda lived in McKinney, but her family is mourning her loss from their home in India.

The family plans to have her body sent to India, Kolla said.

CNN has reached out to the consulate general of India in Houston for more information.


The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

KSL 5 TV Live

Crime

Utah Highway Patrol troopers have caught up with a man accused of fleeing from them while driving b...

Pat Reavy, KSL.com

Driver arrested, accused of going 133 mph while fleeing police

Utah Highway Patrol troopers have caught up with a man accused of fleeing from them while driving between 133 mph and 140 mph.

13 hours ago

Wilber Castellanos Hernandez, being pulled out of the USPS truck by Centerville and Bountiful polic...

Michael Houck

Body camera shows Bountiful police interaction with man suspected of stealing a USPS truck

New body camera video shows the nearly hour-long standoff between a man accused of stealing a U.S. Postal Service truck before being taken into custody in February.

1 day ago

Frank Mylar answers questions during a media scrum after the attorney general GOP primary debate wi...

Daniel Woodruff

Former GOP candidate for Utah attorney general charged with bribery

A former Republican candidate for Utah attorney general has been charged with bribery for allegedly offering one of his opponents a job if he dropped out of the race.

2 days ago

Traffic is seen along state Route 73 in Eagle Mountain on July 9, 2024. (KSL TV)...

Andrew Adams

Driver faces enhanced felony charge under new Utah law after Eagle Mountain road rage incident

A driver was charged with a road rage-enhanced felony charge, one of the first under a Utah law that promises tougher road rage penalties.

2 days ago

Entrance sign at Yellowstone National Park. (NPS)...

Emma Tucker, CNN

Yellowstone National Park gunman held woman against her will and planned to carry out July 4th mass shooting, authorities say

The gunman who opened fire in Yellowstone National Park last week, leaving one ranger injured, had held a woman against her will and said he planned to carry out a mass shooting at July 4th events outside the park, authorities say

2 days ago

Judge Keith Barnes addressing Mia Bailey about her charges....

Garna Mejia, KSL TV, and Daniella Rivera, KSL Investigates

New details emerge about protective order against Mia Bailey, accused of murdering her parents in St. George

KSL's Investigators have obtained exclusive new details on a protective order filed against Mia Bailey, the 28-year-old accused of murdering her parents last month in St. George.

2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

A kitchen in a modern farmhouse....

Lighting Design

A room-by-room lighting guide for your home

Bookmark this room-by-room lighting guide whenever you decide to upgrade your lighting or style a new home.

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light up your home with these top lighting trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

2 families lost multiple loved ones in the Texas outlet mall shooting