FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: media@sikhcoalition.org

Statement from Family of Taptejdeep Singh

May 27, 2021 (San Jose, CA) -- The Sikh Coalition is deeply saddened to share that one of the victims of yesterday’s VTA rail yard shooting in San Jose, CA, was a member of the Sikh community: Mr. Taptejdeep Singh.

Mr. Singh’s brother, Karman Singh, released the following statement today on the family’s behalf:

“We are beyond devastated by the loss of Taptejdeep, a beloved father, husband, brother, son, and nephew. He was a wonderful person who was committed to serving others at work and in his free time.” 

“We take some measure of comfort in what we have learned from eyewitnesses and others: Taptejdeep spent his final moments trying to keep others safe. From what we have heard, he reacted quickly to get colleagues into secure offices, and was frantically calling others who would have been coming in for a shift change to warn them about the shooter. We understand that he was attempting to secure his building when he was killed.” 

“Even in these moments of chaos, Taptejdeep was living by the values of Sikhi: living in service and protection of others. We believe that if the shooter had ever asked our brother for help, Taptejdeep would have gone above and beyond for him like he did for everyone he crossed paths with; he never harmed anyone, and no one who knew him would ever want to harm him. We choose to remember Taptejdeep as the hero he was, both in those final moments and throughout his life of service.”

Mr. Singh was 36 years old and had worked as a VTA light rail operator for at least 8 years. He was born in Punjab, India and came to California with his parents about 17 years ago. Mr. Singh is survived by a grieving family, including his wife and children (a three-year-old son and one-year-old daughter).

Sukhvir Singh (no relation), a VTA employee who received a phone call from Mr. Singh to warn him about the shooter yesterday morning, issued the following statement:

"Taptejdeep called me to warn me that there was an active shooter in Building B and to go hide or get out immediately. He told me he was with Paul, another victim, at the time. From what I've heard, he spent the last moments of his life making sure that others--in the building and elsewhere--would be able to stay safe. Because of him, so many people were able to go home to their families. We will never forget how he lived to the highest ideals of Sikhi in a moment of crisis, and my prayers are with his family and the families of all those who lost loved ones in this horrific attack."

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Mr. Singh’s family has shared this photo for reporting purposes. The prayers and hearts of the Sikh Coalition staff are with all of the families who have suffered loss as the result of another senseless, violent attack. We are in touch with Mr. Singh’s family to provide them with additional support as needed, but no family members will be taking additional interviews at this time.