At least 26 people were killed and many more were injured in a deadly shooting at a Texas church on Sunday, November 5.
According to CBN News, a gunman entered First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas about 11:20 a.m. local time and opened fire on those gathered for Sunday worship.
The victims included children as well as elderly members of the congregation. The church’s pastor, Frank Pomeroy, lost his 14-year-old daughter.
Police have identified the suspect as 26-year-old Devin Kelley. Kelley reportedly fled the church after a local resident attempted to fight back. He was found dead in his vehicle after crashing it near the county line. He suffered a gunshot wound, but it is unclear whether this wound was self-inflicted or incurred while in a chase with police.
Officials said they are looking into the case and discerning Kelley’s possible motives. Currently, they do not have any evidence that Kelley was linked to any terrorist organization.
Following this horrific shooting, many around the nation and the world expressed solidarity and shared condolences with the victims and their families. This shooting perhaps hits the country especially hard, following so closely in the wake of the deadly shooting in Las Vegas last month and the even more recent attack in New York City.
Following the church shooting, Texas Mayor Greg Abbott said in a press conference, “There are 26 lives that have been lost. We don’t know if that number will rise or not, all we know is that’s too many, and this will be a long, suffering mourning for those in pain. We ask for God’s comfort, for God’s guidance and for God’s healing for all those who are suffering. As governor, I ask for every mom and dad at home tonight, that you put your arm around your kid and give your kid a big hug and let them know how much you love them knowing that we support each other.”
President Trump also commented on the shooting from Japan, his current stop on his tour of Asia:
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and the families in today’s horrible attack,” Trump said. “It happened at a place of sacred worship. The pain and grief we all feel cannot begin to imagine the suffering of those who lost loved ones.”
“In a time of crisis Americans will do what we do best: we pull together and join hands and lock arms and through the tears and sadness we stand strong,” he added.