A day before her 37th birthday, a San Diego wife and mother of three was shot to death during a cross-country road trip.
Friends and family were always a key part of Kimberly Maokhamphiou’s life. After not seeing her sisters in years, the 36 year-old caregiver decided to drive across the country to visit them.
“She was very patient with everybody,” said her daughter Stacy Maokhamphiou. “If someone looked like they needed help, she would want to help them.”
The family set out to Florida, North Carolina and then Texas for their first big road trip. During their last stop, things turned tragic.
“This vacation has been a very bitter sweet,” said Stacy. “It has great memories and then very low ones too.”
The night of January 3rd, while Maokhamphiou was visiting her sister in Haltom City, Texas, she decided to go outside the apartment complex to clean out the family’s car. Within minutes, she was shot during an attempted robbery. The bullet went through her arm and then her heart. In the end, nothing was stolen.
“I didn't want to believe it,” says Stacy Maokhamphiou, holding back tears. “It was kind of like a nightmare.”
After being shot, a trail of blood shows the victim tried walking to her sister's apartment for help. But her loved one’s never heard.
“She called out for help and no one was there to help her,” says Stacy. “She didn't deserve to die like this.”
Johnny Xeunbane was at the apartment complex that night, but she never heard his wife’s calls for help.
“I just feel like she's still around me,” says Xeunbane. Every time when I go upstairs, do anything I still feel like she's still around me….talking to me, laughing.”
Eventually Maokhamphiou was transported to the hospital where she later died.
Now the family is trying to stay strong, while it copes with the senseless loss.
“I got three kids,” says Xeunbane. “I have to try my best as a father.”
Police in Haltom City, Texas have not made an arrest, but investigators are looking at surveillance video from nearby businesses.
A $10,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest.