Last Thursday, Marine Corps Veteran Robert Sundin (70), lost his life protecting a waitress from armed robbery. The incident occurred at Sundin’s regular breakfast spot in Vallejo, California.
Every morning, Master Sergeant(ret) Sundin stopped at Scotty’s Restaurant. He would read his paper while waitress Teresa Brasher opened the diner for business. Early on December 8th, Brasher was exiting her car when she was accosted by a thief in a ski mask. She recalls, the man was driving an electric scooter, brandishing a gun and pointing to her purse.
Seeing the commotion, Sundin immediately left his vehicle to respond to the situation. During the ensuing confrontation, Brasher was able to get away but the robber shot Sundin in the head. The thief immediately fled the area, and is still at large. Police arrived shortly after, but unfortunately Sundin was declared dead at the scene.
“He’s my guardian angel. He saved my life.” -Teresa Brasher
“He’s always going to be my guardian angel for life.” @USMC veteran Robert Sundin died a hero, says Teresa Brasher, longtime server at Scotty’s Restaurant. Sundin, her regular customer, was shot dead while protecting her from apparent robber. @VallejoPd case. 4,5,6,7 p.m. @KTVU pic.twitter.com/0T16yvNvKe
— Henry K. Lee (@henrykleeKTVU) December 12, 2022
Friends of Sundin are devastated but unsurprised by his bravery. His adopted daughter saying “[his] hobby was helping people”. Upon retiring from the Marine Corps, Sundin worked for Veteran Affairs before joining the Marine Corps League where he was “fiercely devoted to Veterans’ causes in the North Bay”.
Sundin was also a member of his local church, Pastor Eric Luna remembering “if there was a need he saw at the church he met it, he was the first person to arrive and last to leave… a true hero in every sense of the word”.
Sundin’s death marks Vallejo’s 24th homicide of the year, but as the community mourns they are also coming together to hold a ‘Breakfast for Bob’ at the diner, remembering Sundin’s sense of community – all proceeds will go to the Sundin family for funeral expenses.
Brasher describes the situation as a “stupid and senseless crime,” calling Sundin an “absolute hero” and recalling him“[sitting] in his truck reading the newspaper until Scotty’s opened at 6am, then going to his spot at the counter to discuss the morning’s news with the other regulars”.
Vincent Rigoni, a long-time member of the Marine Corps League Napa detachment remembers Sundin, as “always there for the Marine Corps League… he’s the one that pretty much kept the organisation going”.
Sundin was devoted to Veterans’ causes: speaking at an event, he urged Napans to remember those who served “we must remember our Veterans because they have served… they’re serving because they want to protect this nation”.
Police are urging anybody with information about the crime to contact the Vallejo police department.