EAST HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) -- A Manchester man was on duty at the Circle H Food Mart in East Hartford when he was shot in the chest and left to die.
Luthfur Tarafdar, 47, was working at the Circle H on Burnside Avenue on Saturday night when a man walked in and fired a gun at him.
Friends say it was supposed to be Tarafdar's last day on the job; he was leaving to open another store.
Now police are searching for the shooter as friends and family mourn the loss of the man they called Balil.
"He was doing good over here and I don't know what's going on," said Misbah Majid. "It's very sad and he was very close to us, very very close to us."
"Always jolly person, always nice with everybody and never angry," agreed Sadik Ahmed.
Friends say Tarafdar was called into work while at a family picnic on Saturday. He was alone in the store until around 11 p.m. when police say a robber came in.
The suspect shot Tarafdar in the chest, ran off with an undisclosed amount of money, and left him to die.
"When they told me I couldn't believe it," said Cynthia Snellings.
Snellings met Tarafdar as a loyal customer, but she says she lost a true friend.
"He never yelled at nobody even when they yelled at him," she said. "He always kept the peace."
Police were still on the scene nearly 20 hours after the incident was reported. Tarafdar's family tells News 8's Stephanie Simoni that he moved from Queens, New York a few years ago to create a better life for him and his family.
"My uncle was a political leader in the Muslim community and now his wife and he has three kids left and that's not cool, that's not appropriate and we want justice," Tarafdar's niece, Dr. Farjana Khan said.
She says with the recent string of shootings, more needs to be done.
"I just want to know what are we doing, how do we keep ourselves safe, you now from this gun violence," she said.
"Somebody knows something," Snellings said. "I wish they'd come forward because you're going to get caught eventually, so you might as well come out and tell the truth."
The suspect is described as a black male, late teens to early 30's. He was wearing a dark colored shirt, light colored shorts possibly capri type, and a dark colored baseball hat.
Anyone with information is asked to call police at 860-289-9134.
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