Father of Grand Forks airman killed in shooting says daughter was scared of fellow airman

Natasha Aposhian, 21, died on June 1 inside a dorm at Grand Forks Air Force Base
Published: Jul. 14, 2020 at 6:41 PM CDT
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GRAND FORKS, N.D. (Valley News Live) -The father of an airman killed in Grand Forks says the United States Air Force needs to be held accountable for her death.

Natasha Aposhian, 21, of Laveen, Arizona and another airmen died June 1 at the Grand Forks Air Force Base in an incident her father Brian Murray described as domestic violence.

“You wake up everyday almost hoping, you know you’re just going to snap out of it. And then you are brought back to reality knowing that she is gone,” Murray said, in an interview with Valley News Live on Tuesday.

Aposhian left college in Arizona to pursue a career in the Air Force. It took her about a year before she was accepted.

“When she joined the Air Force, I had my concerns. But, her going through basic, graduating with honors and then going to tech school and graduating second of her class from there,” Murray said.

She arrived at the Grand Forks Air Force Base in April, according to a media release from the Air Force.

Murray said she went there with ambitious goals. Yet on June 1st, she was fatally shot inside one of the base’s dormitory.

“It was as you can imagine a wave of emotions. I just broke down. My legs buckled. I just screamed at the top of my lungs, no,” Murray said. “And ever since then it’s just kind of been a bad dream.

Grand Forks Air Force Base told Valley News Live the investigation into Aposhian’s death is ongoing.

Murray wants the base to answer several questions. Most importantly, how did a gun get inside a dormitory since they aren’t allowed.

Julian Carlos Torres, 20, of Texas also died as a result of the shooting.

While Grand Forks AFB isn’t releasing much details, Torres was a member of security forces and his job permitted him to carry a weapon.

Murray said his daughter was afraid of Torres and told him over the phone the night before she died she ended thing with Torres. He described their relationship as lasting only a few days.

“She did relay to her mother and her best friend that she was afraid of this guy. That there were instances of him being volatile and aggressive and controlling,” Murray said.

With all this love and respect for the military, Murray said there needs to be a change in culture on how enlisted women are treated.

“That should be the safest place to be on a US base. And the fact that something like this happened is unforgivable and should never happen,” Murray said.

Aposhian wanted to spend 20 years in the Air Force, a goal cut short by this tragic event.

North Dakota lawmaker Ruth Buffalo has organized a vigil for Aposhian. It’s being held Wednesday from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in front of the federal courthouse in Grand Forks.

There’s a GoFundMe page in honor of Aposhian and here’s a link to it.

If you’d like to contact Murray, you can email him at justicefortasha@gmail.com or follow him on Twitter @Skull21Brian.

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