© 2021 WFAE
90.7 Charlotte 93.7 Southern Pines 90.3 Hickory 106.1 Laurinburg
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
United States & World

Here's What We Know About The Victims Of The Boulder Shooting

Star Samkus, who works at a King Soopers grocery store in Boulder, Colo., and knew three of the victims of a mass shooting there a day earlier, kneels in front of crosses put up for the victims outside the store on Tuesday.
Star Samkus, who works at a King Soopers grocery store in Boulder, Colo., and knew three of the victims of a mass shooting there a day earlier, kneels in front of crosses put up for the victims outside the store on Tuesday.

A gunman shot and killed 10 people at a King Soopers grocery store in Boulder, Colo., on Monday afternoon.

The victims ranged from age 20 to 65. Some of them were shopping at the store; some worked there. One was a police officer who arrived to help.

Here's what we know about the lives that they lived. We will update this story as we learn more.

Eric Talley, 51

Boulder police Officer Eric Talley is being mourned as a brave officer as well as a husband, a brother and father to seven children.

"Officer Eric Talley is my big brother. He died today in the Boulder shooting," a woman who identified herself as Talley's sister said on Twitter, posting a photo that appeared to show the two of them together when they were children.

"My heart is broken. I cannot explain how beautiful he was and what a devastating loss this is to so many," she added. "Fly high my sweet brother. You always wanted to be a pilot (damn color blindness). Soar."

Talley "responded to the scene, was the first on the scene, and he was fatally shot," said Boulder police Chief Maris Herold, who described his "heroic action."

She added, "I'm grateful for the police officers that responded, and I am so sorry about the loss of Officer Talley."

Talley served a number of roles in his work for the police department and in support of the local community, Herold said. Talley reportedly held a master's degree in computer science, but he switched careers around age 40.

"I can tell you that he's a very kind man, and he didn't have to go into policing, he had a profession before this, but he felt a higher calling," Herold said of Talley on Tuesday.

She added, "He loved this community, and he's everything that policing deserves and needs."

In 2013, Talley and two other officers drew a crowd – and eventually, a round of applause – when they rescued ducklings that had been swept out of a creek and into a caged drainage ditch. It was Talley who waded into the water to coax the ducklings to a spot where his colleagues could scoop them up.

"He was drenched after this," Sgt. Jack Walker said of Talley at the time. "They would go into these little pipes, and he would have to try and fish them out."

Kevin Mahoney, 61

Erika Mahoney, news director at NPR member station KAZU on California's central coast, remembered her father as representing "all things Love."

"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," she wrote on Twitter. "I'm so thankful he could walk me down the aisle last summer."

Mahoney says she is now pregnant. "I know he wants me to be strong for his granddaughter," she wrote.

She thanked the Boulder police for the department's kindness through the tragedy.

Teri Leiker, 51

Teri Leiker was a dedicated King Soopers employee who had worked at the store for more than 30 years, her friend Lexi Knutson wrote in an Instagram tribute, calling her "the most selfless, innocent, amazing person I have had the honor of meeting."

Knutson said the two met in 2017 through the University of Colorado Boulder chapter of Best Buddies, a program that aims to create one-on-one friendships between students and members of the community with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

"Her shy friendship towards me turned into a sort of sisterhood," Knutson wrote, adding that "Teri and I spoke almost every week (especially at 6am, Teri's preferred call time of choice.) She always ended the calls with 'love your buddy Teri.' "

Leiker was a "CU Boulder super fan" who loved going to work, Knutson said. She told Reuters that Leiker had started dating a colleague-turned-friend in 2019. He was working at the store on Monday, she said, but survived the shooting.

"Teri leaves behind her family, her boyfriend Clint, and many close friends that truly cared about her," she wrote.

Rikki Olds, 25

Rikki Olds worked as a front-end manager at the King Soopers grocery store, according to The Denver Post. Her Facebook page identifies her as a graduate of Centaurus High School in Lafayette, Colo., and a student at Front Range Community College, which has multiple campuses in Colorado.

Lori Olds, who identified herself in a Facebook post as Rikki's aunt, wrote that "the Lord got a beautiful young angel yesterday at the hands of a deranged monster."

Her uncle, Bob Olds, told CNN she was a "strong, independent young woman" who was raised by her grandparents. After frantic hours spent calling police and local hospitals in search of information, he said the family was notified of her death around 3 a.m. on Tuesday.

United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 7, which represents grocery store employees including those at King Soopers, confirmed that Olds was a worker at the store and a former union member. It also confirmed that "a few" of its members were working during the shooting, and, citing the ongoing investigation, said it would share more details as they become available.

Kyle Welsh, a union representative, told NPR that two other store employees were killed in the shooting, but had no further details as they were not union members. UFCW 7 represents deli workers employed by King Soopers.

"I'm beyond words that these tragic events continue to occur all too often," Welsh said.
Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.