These Are The Nine Victims Of The Charleston Shooting
The Charleston shooter who opened fire on “Mother” Emanuel AME Church during Wednesday night service has reportedly confessed and been charged with nine counts of murder, but the ordeal is far from over.
The shooter left nine dead and thousands more mourning their loss. Here is a small insight into the lives of those nine victims.
Sharonda Coleman-Singleton was involved in church life by serving communion and encouraging and teaching others. She worked as a speech pathologist and mother of three.
“She was probably there every day,” Coleman-Singleton’s aunt Brenda Hargrove said. “She was an exceptional, kind-hearted person.”
Her oldest son Chris, a baseball player at Charleston Southern University, spoke at a gathering just after his mother’s death.
“Love is always stronger than hate, so if we just love the way my mom would, then the hate won’t be anywhere close what love is,” he told the crowd. “Honestly my knees are a little weak right now, but I’m trying to stay as strong as I can while I press on.”
— Daren Stoltzfus (@DarenStoltzfus) June 19, 2015
DePayne Middleton Doctor
DePayne Middleton Doctor was a 49-year-old mother of four who worked as a grant writer and a local manager with the U.S. Census office.
She was known for her singing voice, and this video makes it clear why.
Cynthia Hurd was a veteran librarian and president of a nonprofit who died just before her 55th birthday. She also served as an officer on the public housing authority’s board where she fought for the poor in her community.
N.C. Sen. Malcolm Graham told the Charlotte observer he loved Hurd, his sister, and that she was a mother figure and a confidant for him.
“When my mother passed 15 years ago, she took over the role of mother,” he told the Charlotte Observer. “The last thing she told me was ‘Don’t look back. Move forward.’… She loved me. And I loved her.”
Susie Jackson, 87, was described as a beloved matriarch of her church who regularly attended Sunday and Wednesday services as well as serving as a trustee and in the church choir.
Family members said Jackson’s nephew Tywanza Sanders died trying to protect her from the gunfire. Her cousin Ethel Lance was also killed.
“She was a loving person, she never had no animosity toward nobody,” her son Walter Jackson told The Charleston Post and Courier. “She took in others. She was just that type of person.”
Ethel Lance, 70, raised five children and worked for decades as a custodian at a local auditorium where she loved to take her family for shows.
“She was funny and a pleasure to be around. And she was a wonderful mother and grandmother,” Cam Patterson, Lance’s coworker for several years, told The Charleston Post and Courier. “She would have her children and grandchildren come to the Gaillard from time to time. She was like me, a no-nonsense grandmother and I know they are going to miss her terribly.”
Rev. Clementa C. Pinckney
Rev. Clementa C. Pinckney, 41, was a rising political and spiritual star whose life was cut short.
He began preaching at age 13, served in the State Legislature at 23, and began leading one of America’s most historic black churches at 26. He was elected to the state senate at age 27.
“He was a remarkable human being,” U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford told CNN’s New Day. “He had a gravelly, deep voice — a radio announcer’s voice, if you will — and he approached life with that same level of gravitas.”
Tywanza Sanders had recently graduated with a business degree from Allen University in Columbia, S.C. He worked at a barbershop and was known to be an important part of the church community.
Family members told The Charleston Post and Courier that Sanders died trying to protect Susie Jackson.
“It was one thing I can count on Tywanza to always be inspirational,” Rahiem Burgess, who knew Sanders since middle school, told The Wall Street Journal.
Rev. Daniel L. Simmons
Rev. Daniel L. Simmons, 74, was on staff as a minister at the church who regularly attended church services and the Wednesday service.
He was the only person to make it to the hospital before dying.
“We love him and we miss him,” his granddaughter, Ava Simmons, told reporters.
Rev. Myra Thompson
Myra Thompson, 59, is the wife of Rev. Anthony Thompson of Charleston’s Holy Trinity REC Church.
“Please join me in praying for the Rev. Anthony Thompson, Vicar of Holy Trinity REC (ACNA) Church in Charleston, his family, and their congregation, with the killing of his wife, Myra, in the Charleston shootings last night,” Archbishop Foley Beach wrote on Facebook.
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