Former Sunshine Coast man Brenton Estorffe was shot and killed inside his Texas home while protecting his young family from burglars.
Former Sunshine Coast man Brenton Estorffe was shot and killed inside his Texas home while protecting his young family from burglars.

'He paid the highest price': Dad's torment over US shooting

THE father of former Sunshine Coast man Brenton Estorffe, who was gunned down in his Texas home, says he may not be able to make his son's funeral over a visa issue.

Michael Estorffe, of Mooloolaba, told The Australian he first found out about his 29-year-old son's death through a frantic phone call from his daughter-in-law Angeleanna after the shooting took place.

Brenton had woken by the sound of intruders in his home and was confronted by the burglers, who shot and killed him before fleeing the house.

Friends of the family told the Daily Mrs Estorffe was shielding their one-year-old child as her husband fought to protect them.

Brenton Estorffe’s home in Texas, which had been decorated for Halloween. Picture: Supplied
Brenton Estorffe’s home in Texas, which had been decorated for Halloween. Picture: Supplied

Mr Estorffe said his son "paid the highest price" when he fought off the two "cowardly" intruders.

Brenton's mother Denise and his siblings, Blaine and Paige, are on a flight to the US, but Mr Estorffe has had to stay behind to sort out an issue with getting his visa approved by the US Consulate.

He told The Australian he had had trouble with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade helping him get a visa in time for Brenton's funeral, after his business visa had recently lapsed.

"My son is going to be buried in the next few days ... am I going to miss his funeral?" he said.

Brenton Estorffe, formerly from Mooloolaba, was shot and killed inside his Texas home on Wednesday (local time). He’s pictured with his wife Angelenna and children.
Brenton Estorffe, formerly from Mooloolaba, was shot and killed inside his Texas home on Wednesday (local time). He’s pictured with his wife Angelenna and children.

The suspects have not been found, according to local reports, and police say it's unclear if there was a motive behind the attack.

"Right now we do not have a motive," Fort Bend County Sheriff Troy Nehls told media.

"All we do know is these two cowards killed a young man that had a beautiful wife and beautiful children, and now she is raising two children on her own."

Sheriff Nehls said the shooting appeared to have happened incredibly quickly.

"You hear the glass breakage," he said.

"You're startled, you get out of bed. And then, within just a few ­seconds or so, there's gunfire."

Tributes are flowing for Brenton from those who knew him back home.

His brother Corbin, who also moved to the US to play football, wrote that his "hero" sibling's death was "still not real".

"Life will never ever be the same without you. Hands down you are my hero the way you stood up for your family," he said.

"Best mate, oldest brother, a son, a father, a uncle, a husband and a f---ing hero."

Brenton and Corbin Estorffe. Photo: Contributed
Brenton and Corbin Estorffe. Photo: Contributed

The Sunshine Coast community is reeling after news of Brenton's death spread overnight.

"So goddamn heartbreaking … such a nice guy," Robyn Pleysier wrote.

"Rest easy big man, gone too soon," Jett Hockam wrote.

Brenton travelled to the US aged 18 for a six-month basketball scholarship in Farmville, Virginia.

He returned to the Coast and studied to be a personal trainer before moving back to the US to play college football for Southern Virginia University. He had been working for the Enterprise car rental company in Texas.

The killing has left neighbours shocked, saying that the area has experienced a few break and enters but nothing as severe as homicide.

A neighbour, Kimberly Patel, said that Mr Estorffe was "as nice as he could be. I can't imagine what the wife is going through right now."  

Ms Patel said that she has in the past left her doors unlocked at night because it is such a quiet neighbourhood.   "It's pretty shocking, to be honest."

Brenton is the third Australian to be killed in the US in recent years.



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