(KTXL) — This Valentine’s Day will be a hard one for thrift shop owners Alfredo and Martha Ochoa after the untimely death of one of their employees, an unhoused woman from Sacramento named Suki.
She was recently hit and killed by an alleged drunken driver, and the Ochoas were informed about her death later by police.
Her funeral was held on Tuesday, organized and paid for by the Ochoa family.
“I let her stay here a long time because to me, she was a part of my family,” Alfredo Ochoa, owner of America Thrift Store, said to FOX 40 News.
Ochoa says that Suki was in a wheelchair and that he and his wife helped take care of her. Suki’s boyfriend, David Armstrong, says that he and Suki have been close to the Ochoa family for a long time.
“I went to Tennessee to see his daughter have her baby. I’ve just been everywhere with them,” Armstrong said.
It was in December of 2022 when, one day, Suki did not appear at the thrift shop.
“At 3 a.m. the police called me from Elk Grove and said, ‘Are you Alfredo?’ I said yeah,” Ochoa recounts. “They said, ‘Suki passed away. She was hit by a car.’”
Unfortunately, this was not the Ochoas’ first time experiencing the death of a loved one to a drunken driver. Their daughter, Carla, passed away in a similar crash in June 2021.
Now, the Ochoas help raise their grandson Noah, who survived the crash.
At their shop, they continue to have a memorial for Suki, a person that was important to the Ochoa family, to her boyfriend and