CHINO HILLS (CBSLA.com) — Hundreds of family and friends gathered Wednesday in Chino Hills to remember a UC Santa Barbara student who was killed when a gunman opened fire in Isla Vista.
KCAL9’s Andrea Fujii said friends told stories of the generosity and kind nature of 22-year-old Katie Cooper.
Cooper’s parents spoke about how she would want to be remembered.
“Katie’s motto was to live every day to the fullest with no regret, please live every day with no regrets,” mother Kelly Cooper said.
Cooper’s father, Dan, said his daughter was escorting two of her sorority sisters home, so they didn’t have to walk alone, when she and Veronika Weiss were gunned down.
Dan said he’s not angry.
“We feel pity for the individual who felt like there was no other recourse,” he said.
Karyn Fillhart, Cooper’s fifth-grade teacher, recalled a school dance when Cooper showed her selflessness.
“Katie volunteered to dance with a boy that no one wanted to dance with and she said, ‘I’ll go dance with him.’ I didn’t even need to ask her, she just said, ‘Can I go partner with him?’” she said.
As the crowd lit candles in Cooper’s memory, friends shared tears and memories.
“She would always be thinking about someone else, never about herself, and I just think all around, she was a beautiful person,” friend Michael Shaddock said.
Cooper was weeks away from graduating from UCSB before she passed away.
Friends said she wanted to be a museum curator.