OC auto shop restores bullet-riddled truck belonging to Cook's Corner shooting victim

David González Image
Friday, December 15, 2023
Auto shop restores truck for pregnant survivor of OC mass shooting
Savannah Hopkins was five months pregnant when she suddenly found herself face-to-face with a mass shooter.

Savannah Hopkins has the keys to her truck back months after it was left riddled with bullet holes and broken glass during a mass shooting in Trabuco Canyon on Aug. 23.

Hopkins was working at Cook's Corner when a gunman walked in and opened fire.

"I ran out the back door once I realized what was happening and ran up to my vehicle and ducked down in there," she said.

Hopkins said the shooter ran out to the parking out and shot through her truck at people running for cover.

"A bullet went right over my head. The glass breaking. I can still hear it," she said.

Hopkins climbed out of the passenger side and came face-to-face with the gunman.

"I put my hands up and tell him I'm five months pregnant and he said, 'Go. Run,'" she said. "As I was running too I was scared that he was going to shoot at me in my back like he was to multiple people that were running."

Hopkins' truck was also damaged in a shootout between the suspect and authorities.

The team at Elite Automotive Services heard about what happened and jumped in to fix the truck.

Co-owner Ziad Traieh said technicians spent more than 150 hours repairing and restoring it.

"Once you start fixing some things you just end up fixing the whole thing. We end up fixing the whole truck and painting the complete truck for her," he said.

In addition, co-owner Eddie Yau said, "The guys just got behind it and ran with it. They wanted to help. Some of the guys they walk around like they're big tough guys but they were choked up. They put everything they had into it."

Elite Automotive said this was a small way to give back to one of the many victims of this tragedy.

Hopkins said getting her truck back just before the holidays is a blessing.

Her daughter is due on Jan. 6 and she plans to name her Angeleah.