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A Greek among the victims of the San Bernardino shooting

04 December 2015 / 15:12:46  GRReporter
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A few hours ago, police in San Bernardino announced the names of 14 people who died during the shootout in the Inland Regional Center, carried out by 28-year-old Saeed Rizwan Farooq and his 27-year-old wife Tashfeen Malik.

One of the victims is 52-year-old Greek Nicholas Thalasinos from Colton, California. Only four days before being killed by the shots of his co-worker, Thalassinos phoned a friend to tell him how much better he felt after a successful surgery, which had removed a tumour from his brain. “Kind of fortuitous that he had just healed from one thing and then this happened,” said his friend Ed Beck to the American media.

Nicholas Thalasinos worked as a health inspector; in the past, he had been a colleague of Beck's wife in New Jersey. A few years ago, he moved to California and continued to work in the health sector. The files of the Regional Centre in San Bernardino confirm that Thalasinos worked as a health and environment specialist – along with his killer Saeed Farooq.

“He had an incredibly good work ethic,” Beck said. “The job of a sanitary inspector is certainly not the most glamorous of professions. He was passionate about it. He wanted to make sure people were safe.”

Beck, 55, described Thalasinos as being outspoken in conservative politics and also someone always willing to lend a helping hand to others. He recalled that when he and his wife were in the process of building an addition to their home Thalasinos would often drop by and pitch in.

“He certainly wasn’t the contractor type, but anything he could do in the construction process, he was willing to do.”


52-year-old Thalassinos was married and had two grown-up sons. From the moment the news of his murder became known, his friends in social networks have never stopped their postings in his profiles. Shocked, they describe Thalasinos as "a kind man" who inspired his friends and acquaintances.

According to the US media, Thalasinos had converted to messianic Judaism. Its followers are Jews who believe in Christ, but still do not identify with Christianity.

The Daily Mail wrote that two weeks before the bloody shooting, Farooq and his wife had a fracas with Thalasinos. According to the newspaper's sources, their discussion grew into a fiery debate about the link between Islam and violence. While Farooq insisted that his self-professed religion is peaceful and the West is incapable of comprehending this, Thalasinos adamantly claimed the exact opposite. The dispute was so intense that the Greek left the room in a state.

According to the New York Post, Thalasinos had published a large number of negative comments about Islam in his Facebook account. The paper argues that according to individuals who were close with Thalassinos, he often argued with Farooq on issues on religion or politics, and staunchly favoured Israel's positions.


Tags: News San Bernardino shooting victims Nicholas Thalasinos health inspector Farooq Saeed
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