Roswell shooting mourners gather for vigil, describe school terror

By John M. Glionna

Los Angeles Times (MCT)

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 15 2014 12:00 a.m. MST

On Tuesday night, she sat inside the convention center with her mother and a friend. Tears streamed down Ellen’s face. “I turned around to see if anyone was hit and I saw a teacher hit the floor,” she said.

The young shooter had a shotgun in his hand, Ellen said, and she looked down and saw the boy who had been shot on the floor in front of him. “There was blood everywhere,” she said, sobbing.

Later, a minister at the vigil led the mourners in prayer. In his talk, he mentioned the suspect, who was in custody Tuesday night. “I pray for that young man who walked into that school this morning with a shotgun,” he said. “I pray for his heart and I pray for his future. What was going through his mind?”

Earlier in the day, at a news conference at the school, Gov. Susana Martinez asked her state to remember the two young victims. “I am asking all New Mexicans to keep these children in your prayers,” she said. “They were shot simply sitting in a gym waiting to go to class.”

Tuesday morning, outside a mall where parents had rushed to meet up with their children, Lawrence Sanchez held his 8-year-old granddaughter, Zayanna, in his arms. The pair waited for the girl’s sister, 13-year-old Brenne, to emerge.

But Zayanna already knew her sister was safe.

“She texted me from the school to say she was fine,” the little girl said. She showed a text she had received in which her sister wrote: “And look! It’s already on the news!”

Los Angeles Times. Visit the Los Angeles Times at www.latimes.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

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