GARY — A delivery driver shot to death a week ago in the city's Glen Park section was a good, kindhearted man who loved his family, his sister said.
David J. Shelton, 30, was a generous man who was always willing to help others, sister Brittany Shelton said.
He also adored his 4-year-old niece Sophia Clinton.
"He was a sweet, loving guy," Brittany Shelton said.
His death Nov. 24 came as a shock, because he didn't use alcohol or drugs and was never in trouble, his family said.
"He was such a nice young man," said Linda Llamaso, David Shelton's mother.
David Shelton would do anything his sister needed for 4-year-old Sophia.
People often mistook Sophia for his daughter, and the two were inseparable, Brittany Shelton said.
"I would be like, 'Do you want to go with me or Uncle Dave?'" she said. "And she would be like, 'I'll stay with Uncle Dave.'"
Llamaso, of Portage, said David Shelton was her oldest child and her only son.
He was a spiritual man who kept to himself.
He worked for about five years as an officer at Westville Correctional Facility after he graduated from high school, but he quit to explore other possible careers, said Llamaso, who also worked at the prison for a time.
David Shelton was delivering pizzas for Luigi's the night he was killed, his sister said.
He enjoyed the job, because he got to see people smile when he arrived with food, she said.
Police told family members Shelton was killed after he arrived at an abandoned home in the 3700 block of Washington Street.
Llamaso said she hopes to see charges filed again anyone responsible for her son's death.
"I would like to ask the young man or whoever was involved why," Llamaso said. "Did you just wake up and decide you wanted to kill someone?"
David Shelton grew up in the Merrillville area before moving to Portage in recent years.
Family members said they're grateful for the support they've received from the community.
"Everyone says, 'Oh my God, not him. He's so nice,'" Llamaso said.
Brittany Shelton said her brother did not have life insurance, and the family is struggling to cover the expense of his funeral.
To donate to the family's GoFundMe account, go to gf.me/v/c/j629/464ag-justice-for-david.
Shelton's homicide remained under investigation Saturday, police said.