San Diego couple touring Barcelona describes atmosphere following deadly attack

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SAN DIEGO - A well-known San Diego restaurant owner is vacationing in Barcelona, as police there search for the driver who plowed into a crowd of people at a popular tourist spot.

It has not been the trip to Spain that Chris Kato, the owner of Kato Sushi in Pacific Beach, and his girlfriend Andrea Carranza planned for. Just as they were getting ready to fly to Barcelona they learned terrorists had attacked the country.

“I don’t know how to explain it. I’ve never been in this situation that I’ve been in now,” said Kato, the owner of Kato Sushi in Pacific Beach. “We were thinking about actually cancelling and not even going on the plane."

After debate with family and friends the couple felt led to follow through with their plans.

They even decided to stay in the original hotel room they booked that is not far from the popular tourist avenue where a van hit a crowd of people, killing 14 and injuring more than 100 others.

“When we got here people were like don’t be scared. Everybody that lives here they’re not afraid. They’re not scared. They want to show these people that they’re not scared to go outside,” Carranza told FOX 5.

The locals are showing strength through pain. Kato and Carranza shared a video of a vigil they attended.

“There were people from all cultures and races bringing flowers and people were crying. It was very humbling,” Carranza said.

The two told FOX 5 they do not regret going on the trip.

“Our family was totally against it. Her mom and my sisters texted us asking us not to go, cancel the trip, but we already booked this. We already paid for everything,” Kato said.

“That’s what [terrorists] want to do. They want to stop people from living their lives and that’s not what they’re going to do to us,” Carranza said. “People need to stay united. They need to love and love always trumps hate."

The couple is standing up with the people of Spain and taking the experience back home with them.

The two plan to be back in U.S. on August 27.