What we know about the Aurora, Ill., mass shooting victims
cmannphoto/iStock(AURORA, Ill.) — The five men gunned down in Aurora, Ill., on Friday were all employees at the Henry Pratt manufacturing plant where the shooting broke out.
The alleged shooter, who was shot dead by law enforcement, was also an employee but was being terminated on Friday, according to Scott Hall, CEO of Mueller Water Products, the Henry Pratt parent company.
Six police officers were injured in the incident, as well as one employee, Hall said.
Here is what we know about the lives lost:
Our thoughts are w the 5 families that lost loved ones on Friday #AuroraShooting & pray their families & friends can one day find peace.
— Loudoun Co. Sheriff (@LoudounSheriff) February 17, 2019
Russell Beyer, of Yorkville, Ill., was a mold operator at Henry Pratt, according to the Aurora Police Department.
Beyer had worked most of the jobs at Henry Platt in his more than 20 years there, according to CEO Scott Hall. He also served as union chairman, Hall said.
Russell Beyer, Ted Beyer’s oldest child, followed in his father’s footsteps — the elder Beyer also was a union chairman and worked at Henry Pratt for four decades, The Chicago Sun Times reported.
Because of Russel Beyer’s “big heart,” he sat in on the alleged gunman’s termination meeting on Friday, Ted Beyer, said, according to the Sun Times.
“He was a hard worker,” Ted Beyer said, according to the Sun Times. “My son died trying to set it straight.”
Vicente Juarez of Oswego, Ill., was a stockroom attendant and forklift operator at Henry Pratt, according to police.
Hall said he joined Henry Pratt in 2006 and was a member of the shipping and warehouse team.
The 54-year-old Juarez, native of Mexico, was a husband, father of three and grandfather of eight, The Chicago Tribune reported.
“He’s the patriarch of the family,” neighbor Julie Zigman told The Tribune. “Everyone looked to him.”
“He was one the nicest guys you could ever meet,” added neighbor William Zigman.
Clayton Parks, of Elgin, Ill., was the Henry Pratt human resources manager.
He joined Henry Pratt four months ago, in November 2018, to manage human resources in Aurora, Hammond, and Denver, said Hall.
Parks was a 2014 graduate of Northern Illinois University’s College of Business, according to the university.
Parks was a “best friend” to his wife and an “incredible father” to their son, his wife, Abby Parks, wrote on Facebook, according to The Chicago Sun Times.
“Beneath all the fog and the shock, and the crushing pain, I believe the same God that brought us together and gave us our precious son will somehow carry us through,” she wrote on Facebook, according to the newspaper. “I’ll love you always and miss you forever, Clay.”
Josh Pinkard, of Oswego, Ill., was the Henry Pratt plant manager.
He texted his wife, Terra Pinkard, to say, “I love you, I’ve been shot at work,” Terra Pinkard wrote on Facebook.
“The police told us there were fatalities. He read my husband’s name. I immediately left and went to get my kids,” Terra Pinkard wrote on Sunday. “With my pastors help, since family was still on planes to get to us, I told my children their dad did not make it and is in heaven with Jesus. I’ve never had to do something that hard.”
“I want to shout from the rooftops about how amazing Josh was! He was brilliant! The smartest person I’ve ever met! My best friend!” she wrote. “The man who was dying and found the clarity of mind for just a second to send me one last text to let me know he would always love me. This unbelievable person was robbed from us.”
“Please continue to pray for my mother in law. This is her second child she will bury,” Terra Pinkard wrote. “Please pray for my sister in law. Josh was her twin brother. Please pray for my children. They are struggling because they miss a daddy who loved them so much. Please pray that somehow I can put that one foot in front of the other. And again thank you for all the kindness you have shown to us.”
Trevor Wehner, of Dekalb, Ill., was killed on his first day as a human resources intern at Henry Pratt, according to Northern Illinois University, where he was a student.
Wehner was expected to graduate NIU in May with a degree in Human Resources Management.
“That’s what he wanted to do,” his father, Tom Wehner, said of the internship, according to The Chicago Tribune. “He had hopes and dreams of doing what he was doing on his first day.”
“Every Husker is a better person having known Trevor Wehner,” his former high school coach wrote on Twitter. “Teammates, classmates, coaches, and faculty members can all remember a great story about Trevor and his fun-loving personality. He even made an impression on the younger kids in our community. We will miss you bud.”
Every Husker is a better person having known Trevor Wehner. Teammates, classmates, coaches, and faculty members can all remember a great story about Trevor and his fun-loving personality. He even made an impression on the younger kids in our community. We will miss you bud.
— Huskers Baseball-Baker (@BakerHuskers) February 16, 2019
Heartbroken to learn that 2015 Illinois Valley All-Star Trevor Wehner of Serena HS was one of the victims of the shooting in Aurora. Friday was the first day of his internship at the Henry Pratt Company. Our thoughts and prayers are with his friends and family.
— IllinoisValleyASGame (@IV_AS_Game) February 16, 2019
“Loss like this is devastating and senseless,” university president Lisa Freeman said in a statement. “I ask our university community to please keep the Wehner and Parks families, friends and communities in your hearts and offer them caring thoughts.”
“Our hearts are with the victims and their loved ones, the first responders, the Aurora community and the entire Mueller family during this extremely difficult time,” Hall said in a statement Saturday. “As we grieve together, we will provide information in the coming days on the counseling services and support we will be offering to the families of the victims and to all of our colleagues.”
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