x
Breaking News
More () »

Friends, family struggle with loss after DeKalb cashier killed over mask dispute: 'All of that could have been prevented'

Those who knew Willis are disappointed and shocked at how a request to put on a facemask led to the deadly shooting.

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — Close friends and family members of a woman gunned down inside a grocery store gathered to remember her life on Sunday afternoon. 

The family held a viewing for Laquitta Willis at the Gregory B. Levett & Sons Funeral Home in DeKalb.

Authorities said the shooting happened after a customer was instructed to pull up his facemask while inside the Big Bear Supermarket. The suspect, Victor Lee Tucker, became frustrated at the request and shot Willis.

People who attended the viewing described Willis as loving, polite, and caring. Vickie Obum said she’s known Willis for a very long time and is having a hard time processing the tragedy.

“I’m coming here to pay my last respects,” Obum said.

11Alive has covered the emotional tributes for 41-year-old Willis all week at the store, which transformed into a memorial site for the beloved community member.

Shun Blassingame said Willis was approachable and a sweetheart.

“I walk in first and say, 'Hey, how is everybody doing.' And she would always speak,” Blassingame said.

Obum, while at the viewing, said that she is traumatized by what happened to Willis, who worked at the supermarket for 10 years.

“It took me to another level. Scared. You know, just scared. I mean … that’s all I could say,” Obum said.

Those who knew Willis are disappointed and shocked at how a request to put on a facemask led to the deadly shooting.

“All of that could have been prevented. All he had to do was go in there and put a mask on. He ain’t have to take that girl’s life like that. It’s so simple,” Blassingame said.

The family of Laquitta Willis will have a private funeral for her Monday evening at 1 p.m. at the Gregory B. Levett & Sons Funeral Home.