Mom of local professor killed in random attack forgives killer

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SEATTLE – The mom of the local professor brutally killed in Pioneer Square says she has already forgiven the killer.

Troy Wolff died protecting his girlfriend from a stranger armed with a knife.

“Children are not supposed to die before their parents but it happened,” said Troy’s mother Pam Wolff.

It started off as a fun night, Troy and his girlfriend Kristin Ito had just left the Sounders game Friday night when an alleged mentally ill man started stabbing Kristin in the torso out of nowhere.

“In my eyes he saved Kristin, he is a hero,” said close friend Robert Castro.

The knife wielding stranger turned the weapon on Troy  when he jumped in to save his girlfriend. On a hospital bed recovering, Kristin found out Sunday that her boyfriend of four years had died.

“You have these emotions it’s second by second you are up and down,” she is going to go through that,” said Pam.

As the family tries to deal with the loss, the Pioneer Square community is shocked by the random violence.

“It’s terrify, it’s scary, the world is definitely changing,” said Trenton Cotton.

“I don’t think people should walk in fear but we should be aware,” said Julianna Lee.

On Sunday Seahawks fans walking by what was a crime scene on Friday were wondering if anyone tried to help the couple.

“I think people need to step in more when it comes to stuff like that after a Sounders game there were obviously tons of people around,” Rania Aboulhosn.

Pioneer Square business owners are also rattled.

“We are all concerned that something like that happens,” said Tinello owner Rudy Lavalle.

Lavalle says it’s time the community reclaim Pioneer Square which he calls the heart of Seattle, ripe with history and tourists.

“We have to directly deal with it the city has to focus on it and not let up,” said Lavalle.

But for Pam Wolff her focus is to deal with the pain. The only way she knows how to do that is to forgive.

“I know people are going to have a hard time understanding it but this man was somebody’s son like Troy was my son,” said Wolff.

The suspect is scheduled for a bail hearing Monday afternoon.

Kristin is in stable condition as of Sunday night.

Troy was the chair of the English department at Shoreline Community College. Colleagues say Troy was a passionate leader who cared about his students.

Many in Pioneer square say the recent attack brings to mind other victims including Nicole Westbrook.

The 21 year-old was shot and killed in a random drive-by shooting last year. The killer is still on the loose.

professor killed

Photo courtesy of Daniel Berman/

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