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Former Israeli army soldiers helped save Gaslamp shooting victim

Posted at 5:26 PM, Apr 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-26 20:38:45-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - On Monday, ABC 10News spoke to the medics who are credited with saving the life of one of the men who was injured during last week's shooting in the Gaslamp Quarter.

A valet attendant was killed. Three tourists and a San Diegan were injured before police captured the gunman.

"We saw the guy shooting at the people. We just took a few steps back. We didn't know what was going on," said Shai Gino. He and Dvir Benesh are former soldiers who served in the Israeli army and now live in San Diego where they work as home remodelers. They're in their mid-20s.


Just after Benesh finished his DJ set on Thursday night, he and Gino saw the shooting and ran to help a man who'd been struck. "We put pressure on his chest," said Benesh who added in part, "We said [that] everything is going to be okay. The ambulance is going to be right here. [We told him that] we're here to help you and you're going to make it and just breathe with me, breathe with me."

On Monday, police released the names of the recovering survivors, including 68-year-old San Diegan Steven Ely and three men in their 20s from New Jersey. Police said that they are Vincent Gazzani, Alexander Balis and Jatil Kodati.

One of them reached out to Gino from the hospital. "He texted me [on Monday] that he's okay and he's super grateful and we saved his life."


Part of that text message reads, "If it wasn't for you, I don't think I would be alive."

28-year-old Justice Boldin died in the shooting. Boldin was a valet employee for the Pendry Hotel, working for Ace parking.

Police said that 32-year-old suspect Travis Sarreshteh shot him before taking off and shooting the four others in what SDPD believes were unprovoked attacks.

Court documents show that he pled guilty to an assault-related misdemeanor from 2018 where he was ordered to serve probation and not have guns. Court documents also show that he has a current warrant out for a business license felony. He is now in custody and faces murder and attempted murder charges.