Murdered clerk's father: 'He was my shining star'

KENT, Wash. -- The family of the gas station clerk gunned down last week in Kent wants people to know how special their son was.

The family of Carlos Gonzales say they're tired of hearing about the suspect in the double homicide and want the public to know how senseless the killing was.

"He was my shining star," said Tony Deniston, Gonzales' father.

The 26-year old was gunned down in the Shell station parking lot last week while trying to break up a fight. Store manager Dave Christianson was also killed in the shooting.

For several days police would only identify Gonzales as "the clerk."

"He's not the clerk. He's a son, he's a brother, he's a cousin, he's a friend," Deniston said.

The family is now bringing out all of the special notes he was fond of writing.

"There's this one that says, 'Dear Mom. I love you. You're the best mom in the whole wide world. Love, your son, Carlos Deniston Gonzales," said his mother, Maria.

Gonzales was an avid snowboarder who wrote on his Facebook page just hours before he was killed, "Ahh life couldn't get much better being happy and having an amazing girlfriend!! I'm For sure blessed!!"

He held down a fulltime job at the QFC distribution center and worked part-time at the place where he lost his life last Wednesday. The main suspect is in custody and a second man is still on the run.

"Right now it's all about my son. I'm tired of hearing about them. I could care less," Deniston said.

A memorial at the gas station where Gonzales was a popular figure has grown since the shooting.

"They told me he always had a smile on his face. That's my son," Deniston said.

As memorial visitors look at photos, his family doesn't want them to see a crime victim, but a much loved young man. Deniston,

"My son was a good man, a smart man, a compassionate man and he's going to be truly missed," Deniston said.

The memorial will be held Wednesday at 1 p.m. at Yahn & Son in Auburn.