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Family devastated after shooting at bridge shelter

Posted at 6:19 PM, Dec 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-30 21:44:03-05

San Diego (KGTV)- The family is devastated after security guard, Ernest "Ernie" Buchanan was shot and killed while working at a homeless shelter in East Village. 10News spoke with his brother, who says Buchanan died doing what he loved, helping and serving others.

The father of 6 and grandfather of 4 was shot outside of the Alpha Project's newest bridge shelter. He worked there since it opened in early November.

"His words was I like my job, I like the hours, and Big Bro things are good."

RELATED: Vigil to be held for Alpha Project security guard who was shot to death in front of East Village homeless shelter

Brother, Mark Forte, says that that was the last thing Buchanan told him just a day before he was killed.

"So for anybody to shoot him, he wasn't expecting it," says Forte. "He didn't have no issues down there. It was good for him."

This isn't the first time that gun violence has hit the family. Back in June, Buchanan's son Erick was shot while at a party in La Jolla. Forte says he talked to Erick, who is doing great but is now reeling from his father's death.

"He just prays that his dad's soul makes it to heaven."

RELATED: Alpha Project security guard shot, killed outside East Village shelter

The family says Buchanan loved to joke and have a good time. He even served as a coach for his son's football teams.

"Him being gone is going to create a huge irreplaceable void."

Forte says he hopes his brother's death sparks change in the community and for individuals to put down the guns. "We must look out for one another, and if we are not looking out for one another, we are failing ourselves."