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‘She had an enormous heart of gold’: Boise mall shooting victim had Colorado ties

Published: Oct. 27, 2021 at 8:35 PM MDT|Updated: Oct. 28, 2021 at 7:28 AM MDT
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - Jo Acker, 26, was working security the day of the Boise, Idaho, mall mass shooting. Her family says she ran toward the suspect to stop him, likely saving many lives.

Jo Acker, a trans woman, was born in Seattle Washington and moved to Colorado Springs to be with family. She later moved to Boise to finish high school before enlisting in the Army.

Acker’s sister tells 11 News she had an enormous heart of gold and would do anything for anybody no matter what.

“Confronting someone whom she viewed to be a threat to others or a bully was entirely within her character even prior to enlisting,” said Tiffany Luna, Jo Acker’s oldest sister.

Luna says there has been an outpouring of support and messages the family has received about the impacts Acker had on them.

“We have had people messaging us to tell us how she helped them, how she saved them, and we are so thankful for the love and support we are receiving.”

Acker’s oldest sister says she would want everyone to remember to choose love and to not make this tragic incident about something else. She says Acker would want people to focus on telling those that you love how much you love and care about them because you never know if you will get another chance to do so.

Acker has a 3-year-old daughter, Everay; five sisters; and a stepbrother.

Her family says they are shattered and devastated about the loss.

According to Boise police, a gunman opened fire at the Boise mall Monday. Police say the suspect killed two people and injured four others including a city police officer. The other victim in the shooting was 49-year-old Roberto Padilla Arguelles.

Acker’s family has set up a GoFundMe to help with expenses and to support little Everay. You can contribute here.

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