Pearl Harbor shooting victims mourned by loved ones

Roldan Agustin and Vincent Kapoi, Jr. were killed at the military base.

December 7, 2019, 3:35 PM

The families of two slain civilian employees of the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard say they are left with "so many unanswered questions" after being shot to death, allegedly by a U.S. Navy sailor.

Roldan A. Agustin and Vincent J. Kapoi, Jr., who worked for the Department of Defense, were killed by a 22-year-old gunman, officials said.

"Our lives have been changed forever," said Kapoi's sister, Theona, who read from a statement to members of the media on Friday outside of the military base. "There are so many unanswered questions, but we all have to be honest, it changes nothing because we can't bring him back."

A third worker was also shot and was in critical condition, officials said.

The alleged shooter has been identified as Gabriel Romero, officials said. A machinist's mate auxiliary fireman from Texas, Romero was assigned to the USS Columbia, a submarine that was docked as the shipyard for routine maintenance.

Authorities believe Romero opened fire Thursday at the crowded military base near Honolulu.

"The incident happened in 23 seconds," said Norm Dominesey, NCIS special agent-in-charge at a press conference on Friday.

Officials are still investigating the shooting and the motive, though there are no apparent ties to domestic terrorism, Dominesey said.

While it's unclear if Romero knew any of the victims, an anonymous military official told the Associate Press that he was seeking counseling and faced non-judicial punishment, which is a lower-level administrative process for minor misconduct.

As the investigation continues, the families of Agustin and Kapoi them as family men.

"Having grown up in Waipahu, Roldan enjoyed working on cars with his friends and spending time with his family and adored his nieces," according to a statement obtained by ABC News affiliate KITV. "We will forever remember Roldan to be humble and honest, and a generous and patient man."

Kapoi, 30, was a metals inspector apprentice and Agustin, 49, was a shop planner. They both worked on the shipyard along with thousands of others who witnessed the bloodshed, said Dominesey.

PHOTO: Security stands guard outside the main gate at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, in Hawaii, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019.
Security stands guard outside the main gate at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, in Hawaii, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019.
Caleb Jones/AP Photo

A funeral for Vincent Kapoi is planned for Dec. 15 at 3 p.m. at the Kapalama School Chapel at Kamehameha Schools, where he graduated, relatives said.

"What we do have to do, and must do, is honor his memory, keep him alive in our hearts and please keep him in your hearts and always remember good times," his sister said as she fought back tears. "May we ask for your respect and space in our time of grieving."

Kapoi leaves behind a wife and other relatives, according a fundraising website launched by his relatives to pay for his funeral.

Arrangements for Agustin were not known as of Saturday.

"He was a loving son, brother, uncle and friend to many," the Agustin family said.