Thornton Walmart shooting victims identified

“People just navigated toward him and latched onto him. He’d just take them under his wing.”

Smoke from western wildfires envelops Denver, Sept. 4, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

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By Alina Hartounian and Nicholas Riccardi, Associated Press

The three people who died in the shooting at a Thornton Walmart were identified after police took suspect Scott Ostrem, 47, into custody. One was a grandfather, another was a grandmother and the third was a young father with another child on the way.

A grandfather who loved adventure

Carlos Moreno, 66, was a grandfather, a longtime maintenance worker at a group of universities in downtown Denver, a Broncos fan, avid fisherman and fan of exploring and adventure.

He took his large family on trips to the mountains near Rocky Mountain National Park to look for wildlife and to Sea World in Texas, according to a cousin, Russ Cordova.

“A very loving, passionate and sociable person,” Cordova said of Moreno. “People just navigated toward him and latched onto him. He’d just take them under his wing.”

Moreno was a familiar figure at the Auraria Higher Education Center at the southern edge of downtown Denver, said center spokesman Blaine Nickerson said.

His death “leaves a big hole in both his department and the campus as a whole,” Nickerson said.

“Her smile is contagious”

Pamela Marques, 52, was a proud mother and grandmother whose life revolved around her daughter and granddaughters, said Marques’ niece Anntionette Marques.

“They were her life,” she said in a Facebook message. “She’s generous, caring, … and her smile is contagious.”

Marques’ daughter is in disbelief following her mother’s death, Anntionette Marques said.

Pamela Marques was with her husband at the Walmart when she was fatally shot, Anntionette Marques said.

A young father with another on the way

Victor Vasquez, 26, had two young daughters and a third child on the way when he was killed at the Walmart, according to a GoFundMe page set up to collect donations for his family.