A month after the fatal shooting of her 28-year-old brother along a freeway in Oakland, California, Barbara Nguyen is calling on elected officials to curb gun violence.
David V. Nguyen, a former Alameda County Sheriff’s Office recruit, was driving on Interstate 580 around 4:30 p.m. on Jan. 4 when someone fired a gun into his black Toyota Prius.
David reportedly crashed into a guardrail after being shot. He was found and taken to a hospital, where he later died of his injuries.
Authorities described the incident as a “senseless act of gun violence.” David had been expected to graduate and join the force on Feb. 4.
“We got through the struggles of being low income, being a first generation family. I got through it because of him,” David’s sister, Barbara, told NBC Bay Area last month.
But exactly a month after David’s death, Gene Ransom, a local basketball legend, fell victim to another shooting while driving on Interstate 880. The news shook Barbara.
“I just learned about it today. And when I heard about it, I just started crying,” she told ABC7 News in an interview on Saturday.
Ransom’s shooting marked the fifth fatal incident on Oakland freeways in the past nine months, according to ABC7 News. Jasper Wu, a 23-month-old boy, was also killed after being shot on Interstate 880 last November.
Barbara believes “nothing much” is being done to highway shooting cases. While describing herself as a “small little Asian girl” with a “small little voice,” she is speaking out to urge officials to protect their communities.
“Someone step up. Someone do something about it. Please,” Barbara told ABC7 News. “Because the past two years, you just see these crimes increasing. It’s not going to stop. It’s not going to stop unless someone with power takes action.”
A funeral was held for David on Jan. 24. Family, friends, colleagues and officials all gathered to honor his memory.
Barbara also co-organized a GoFundMe page to help “cover the costs of closing this chapter and beginning the next” for their family. As of this writing, the fundraiser has received $92,000.
“He was taken from this world way too early, before fulfilling the great potential we all knew he had within him. He was a son, a friend, a brother. He was a leader, a mentor, and probably the silliest clown one could ever know,” Barbara wrote.
“David was a humble man, and we’re asking for any help at all in spreading his message and continue his legacy.”