PLACER COUNTY — Family members say the Sacramento man who slipped and fell into the fast-moving American River Sunday was expecting his first child.
Most days, Andy Ortega Fonseca could be found buzzing away at So Fly Ink in Sacramento.
“He was one of the good ones. He was probably one of the best guys I had,” said the shop’s owner Pete Ozuna.
On Tuesday, his tattoo station sat empty.
“The good die young, that’s true. In his case, that’s very true,” Ozuna told FOX40.
The 23-year-old was out taking pictures at the American River in Placer County with his fiancée Sunday evening. Rescue crews say he was swept away by the river near the No Hands Bridge.
After an intense search with helicopters and dive teams, rescue crews found his body Monday.
“I thought it was a joke or something. I says, ‘Andy? Not Andy,'” Ozuna said.
Ortega Fonseca worked at Ozuna’s tattoo shop on and off for several years but he also considered him a friend.
“You know, we could be having a bad day in here, everybody has bad days, he’d come in here and make you laugh,” Ozuna said. “That’s the kind of person he was. He was really outgoing.”
Family members say Ortega Fonseca was always smiling.
“He would always tell me about how he’s excited to have a kid, you know, his relationship with his fiancée. They really connected,” Ozuna said.
But now, rather than planning a wedding, his family is planning a funeral. The family has started a GoFundMe for funeral expenses.
“It’s just a tragic loss,” Ozuna said. “Everybody’s feeling it. Everybody who knows Andy, I’m sure they’re hurting.”
Rescue crews stress the waters are cold and choppy so everyone should be careful near the rivers.