VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Kate and Jason Nixon had the perfect marriage and a picture-perfect family.
"I relieve it every day when my youngest 3-year-old daughter wakes up and says, 'I want Mommy.' It renews it every day," Jason said.
The heartbreaking daily reality is that Kate and Jason's three girls - Morgan, Madeline and Mackenzie - have been robbed of their mother, and Jason is working on his own to parent with an open wound.
"It starts when you put them in the car in the morning. These are the things Kate loved to do; that's what she lived for, and now I have to do it all," he said.
The stress of it all finds him sick in the hospital Thursday, four days before the two-year anniversary of the Virginia Beach Municipal Center mass shooting.
"It is emotional, and it wears you down," Jason told News 3 from the hospital.
Kate, just 42 and a veteran city engineer, was shot in the shoulder on May 31, 2019, by her coworker. She and 11 others were killed.
"She called me on the phone at 4:06 p.m., and I think she was shot at 4:05 p.m. She said, 'Jason, I have been shot - call 911,'" he said.
The night before she died, she told Jason trouble was brewing at work and she felt her disgruntled coworker was going to shoot up the place. Jason told her to take a gun to work, but she declined, citing workplace policy.
"He got pissed off and he went on a rampage," Jason said.
Nixon says the shooter was on the verge of getting fired and had performance issues. But the City of Virginia Beach claims no motive was found in their Final Investigative Summary Report released this year.
"You've got to be a moron to say there is no motive," Jason said.
Nixon wants the city to be held accountable. He has four days to file a wrongful death lawsuit against them before the window expires.
"I am sick of the City of Virginia Beach doing what they want, when they want. Someone needs to hold them accountable," Jason said.
He, like many other families, is saddened that two years later, a permanent memorial to honor those brutally murdered has not been built.
"It is beyond frustrating because it's such a simple task," he said.
Jason is working each day to do what Kate would want, carrying on her legacy through Kate's most precious gifts.
"Her daughters - she wanted girls, and she got them and she valued them. It's what she lived for," Jason said.
The City of Virginia Beach has created a 5-31 Memorial Committee and has hired two consultants to work on the permanent memorial project at a cost of $115,000. They plan to update the process next month.