Glynda Boyd said her family was waiting to board a plane at the Norfolk, Va., airport last month when a man angrily accused them of laughing at him, ABC News reported Thursday.
Boyd said her aunt laughed loudly at an inside joke told by a family member. The man, who she believes was Aaron Alexis, approached and demanded to know why they were laughing at him. He began screaming profanities and performed motions at his side as if he were carrying a weapon.
"It was a disturbing type of behavior," Boyd said. "I felt fear. A sense of fear because it was off. He looked like he was puzzled, something was wrong."
He walked away, but returned several minutes later and again asked why they were laughing at him.
Several security guards arrived, Boyd said, and told him he wouldn't be able to fly if he didn't stop.
The day of the Navy Yard shooting, Boyd said she turned on the television and saw the man's photo, with him identified as Alexis, the suspect in the shooting.
"And I just started screaming and I did not go to sleep," she said. "Did not sleep, couldn't because it just kept playing back in my mind, my encounter with him and my family."
A law enforcement official confirmed Alexis had been at the Norfolk airport the day Boyd said she encountered him and that he was involved with an altercation with another passenger.