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Pregnant victim of Yountville standoff remembered

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A hostage standoff Friday at a veterans home in Yountville tragically took the life of four people including a Napa woman who was seven months pregnant and married one year ago Saturday, a family friend said.

“We are very, very sad,” said Vasiti Ritova, a friend of the family of Jennifer Gonzales Shushereba, 32, who died in the standoff.

Sheriff’s officials initially said Shushereba’s last name was Gonzales and she was 29 years old.

Napa County sheriff’s Capt. Steve Blower said Shushereba’s baby also died.

Shushereba was a clinical psychologist with the San Francisco Department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System.

She was working in Yountville in The Pathway Home program, which serves mainly veterans who fought in wars after the September 11 terrorist attacks.

The program provides educational, professional and clinical support to post-9/11 veterans pursuing school- or work-related endeavors as they transition to civilian life.

Ritova knew Shushereba because Ritova’s sister was a caregiver for Shushereba’s grandmother.

The two families were close because Shushereba visited her grandmother often and even spoke at the funeral of Ritova’s sister.

“Our dearest, dearest Jennifer,” Ritova said. She “was the perfect granddaughter any grandma would ever ask for.” Shushereba would come every other week or so to help look after her grandmother, cooking meals, playing the Ukulele and bathing her.

“That was who she was,” Ritova said.

Shushereba is a graduate of Saint Francis High School in Mountain View and alumni offered their condolences today on Facebook.

“We are very saddened by news of the passing of Dr. Jennifer Gonzales, ’03, a post said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the Gonzales family.” Two other women and the alleged gunman Albert Wong, 36, of Sacramento, died in the standoff, which took place at the Veterans Home of California at 260 California Drive.

Jennifer Golick, 42, of St. Helena, was the clinical director of The Pathway Home program.

Christine Loeber, 48, of Napa, was executive director of the program.

Officials with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs said in a statement:

“Our sympathies are with the families, friends and colleagues of Jennifer Gonzales, a psychologist with the San Francisco Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care System, Pathway Home’s executive director Christine Loeber and staff therapist Jen Golick.”

Neither The Pathway Home program nor the Veterans Home of California is part of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

 

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