Shannon Johnson's studio apartment in Koreatown is a museum to his life.
More than two dozen framed concert posters fill the walls of the main room. "We had tickets to see Gary Clark Jr. tomorrow," his girlfriend, Mandy Pifer, said Friday morning.
In the kitchen, portraits of relatives hang over a small, round table.
Johnson had several of the images tattooed on his body: His first wife, his grand-daddies, his father, who died in a grain silo accident in Georgia when Johnson was a small boy.
He wanted Pifer to be his next tattoo. They had recently decided to get married and planned to tell their families this month.
In the bathroom, a framed collage of business cards hangs over the toilet, mostly from truck stops across the country.
Johnson drove 18-wheelers for about a decade — with the CB handle Shannondoah — before he gave up life on the road to finish college and settle down. Around 2005, he started working for the Public Health Department in San Bernardino County.
At the office, Pifer said, Johnson enjoyed talking about religion with Syed Rizwan Farook, a fellow restaurant inspector. Farook was a Muslim. Johnson was a Christian who dabbled in Hinduism.
"He loved the department because he said it was like working in the United Nations," Pifer said.
Pifer, a psychotherapist and longtime member of Mayor Eric Garcetti's crisis response team, met Johnson online about three years ago. Six months later, she moved into the apartment across the hall.
He awoke each morning to read the news online and get his caffeine fix. He took his coffee with sugar and creamer. He had to be out the door by 4:45 a.m. to make it to work. He would text Pifer from the train.
"Have a great day. I love you," he wrote Wednesday morning in their last communication.
Sitting in Johnson's kitchen, she struggled to recall details. "My memory is damaged right now," she said.
It's a common phenomenon among trauma survivors.
"I've studied it," she said. "I've read about it. I've heard about it from clients. Intellectually I understood it. Experiencing it is something different."
Update: When the gunfire began, Johnson shielded his co-worker Denise Peraza telling the young woman: 'I got you.' She was wounded but survived. Read her account>>