shooting

‘He is dead.’ There was blood on the rug and table. This was the place he died, where he took his last breath. It was unreal.’: Woman mourns death of brother, ‘My life will never be the same’

“‘I sat in my room, talking to him and waiting for my husband, a start of what was sure to be another boring day of quarantine thanks to COVID-19. ‘I saw something on the news about a shooting.’ He was certain it was my brother. I picked up my phone to discover a 3-minute voicemail from my dad of nothing but screaming and chaos.”

‘Ma’am I don’t know if they informed you, but we’re sending detectives now.’ He looked at me and said, ‘Michael did not make it.’: Woman loses partner to active shooter

“I saw them put the shirt over his face. I remember his body just being so cold but somehow, he still had that smirk on his face I fell in love with. I was taken to a cop car where I was held waiting for a homicide investigator. Later that morning, a very tall, dark-headed man walked towards me in a long trench coat. Everything was a blur.”

‘You ruined it all.’ I looked in my husband’s killer’s eyes. I let go of my intense anger. He took my husband, but he will not take me.’: Wife confronts husband’s killer in court, ‘I vow to NEVER EVER let him control me’

“I chose my son’s life over avenging my husband’s death. But I had one stipulation — I wanted to address him at the sentencing. I was nauseous yet confident. I’d written my speech as a story that started from the beginning. Our love wasn’t typical, our marriage unique, and my husband was truly better than most. My hands shook as I walked forward, my voice cracked as I spoke, but I made it through. By the time I finished, the packed courtroom was in tears. I dreaded the day he would be free.”

‘We turned off the lights in the classroom, closed the blinds, and laid quietly in the corner. I was so scared.’: 9-year-old recounts ‘chaotic scene’ hiding in classroom after Saugus High School shooting in Santa Clarita

“‘This is not a drill!,’ their teachers yelled. My daughter answered the phone. Her voice shook as she described a chaotic scene. ‘We were outside lining up. I saw my teacher running toward us in high heels. Then she yelled at us to run to our classrooms.’ She is just 9 years old. She and her friend grabbed hands, darted into the nearest classroom, and peaked through a crack in the blinds.”

‘He got shot, didn’t he?’ I looked out the blinds, waiting for the police to pull up. Finally, 2 men got out.’: Wife loses police officer husband in line of fire on his day off

“‘Dad, Sean isn’t answering. I’m scared.’ I see breaking news. There was a shooting at an apartment complex. I hear the reporter, ‘People are saying an officer was involved in the shooting.’ My heart sank. I knew right then, it was Sean. Then the black SUVs stopped in front of our house.”

‘He looked me straight in the eyes and muttered a single word: RUN.’: Crowd of thousands mistake popped water bottle for gunshot, woman claims mass shootings have us all ‘living in fear’

“I walked around the venue, trying to find a spot in the crowd. Then, we heard it. ‘GUN!’ Screams erupted. My friend and I shared a mutual look of terror before breaking into a sprint. Adrenaline carried us. Police officers ran towards us, guns pulled. ‘Keep your heads down!’ In the end? It was a popped water bottle. But I will remember it as if it were real because, in that moment, it was.”

‘I gave birth, my life was complete. 3 days later, a stray bullet crashed through our window, striking my husband.’ Widow finds love after loss with old friend, hopes her son knows how ‘truly loved’ he is by ‘both of his dads’

“Our backyard neighbor squeezed the trigger. The bullet traveled over 200 yards to our home, crashed through our back window, and continued across our living room. My postpartum body was weak, but I dragged myself to Justin’s side. Overnight, I became a shell of the person I once was. Later, my friend tried to set me up on a date. ‘Will he think I don’t love Justin anymore?’ We immediately hit it off. ‘Hey Jess,’ he said, ‘It’s so good to see you.’ I hope my son will grow up to be like both of my husbands.”

‘What would we do if someone started shooting?,’ I wondered in church. I could feel my heart racing.’: Mom says her fear can be ‘crippling’ following mass shootings, but knows there will ‘always be light’

“Where were the exits? How would I protect my kids? I hate that my mind was in a place of fear in church of all places. I often run to the grocery store or Target with all 3 of my kids. How will I protect them if someone started shooting? How can I keep them safe? How can I teach them to protect themselves? Fear can be crippling. But there will also always be light.”

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