Father of 7 killed while driving for Uber, family says
DURHAM, N.C. (WRAL) - An Afghan refugee who had just become a United States citizen was fatally shot while driving for Uber in North Carolina, according to his family.
Ainzurgal Totakhil was born in Afghanistan, but his work in that country was to help Americans. His cousin, Yousaf Mangal, says for seven years, Totakhil did translation and logistics for U.S. soldiers.
“It is extremely dangerous for those who work with the U.S. troops. The Taliban are easily targeting those people. He was risking his life to help the U.S. government back in Afghanistan,” Mangal said.
Mangal says that’s the work he did, too. In 2016, the cousins were granted special visas to come to the U.S., where they were supposed to be safer. Both started new careers driving for Uber.
Totakhil was working Dec. 30 when he was shot and killed, according to Mangal. Police say his body was found in his car on a street in Durham, North Carolina.
“He was a really nice and kind person. He was just doing his daily work to make money and feed his family,” Mangal said.
Totakhil was a husband and father of seven with a baby on the way. His family was about to move to the U.S. at the time of his death, and they still plan to do so. A GoFundMe to support them has raised more than $30,000.
Totakhil became a U.S. citizen in December, according to Mangal, an American dream that was just getting started.
“We didn’t expect that he would be killed because we thought that America was more safe than Afghanistan. But right now, we have been hearing that a lot of crime is taking place here in Durham,” Mangal said.
Police have not made any arrests in the case.
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