SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas – At least three students from schools near Sutherland Springs were among the 26 killed when gunman Devin Patrick Kelley opened fire inside the First Baptist Church there Sunday.
Officials from Floresville, La Vernia and Stockdale independent school districts confirmed this information at a news conference Monday.
None of the names of the 26 victims have been officially released, however school district officials said schools in their districts have been affected by the shooting and are providing grief counselors to students, their families and district employees.
“(A counselor) told them that their classmate had died yesterday and she told them that that was OK to be sad," Dr. Sherri Bays, Floresville ISD superintendent, said.
According to information released by the superintendents of the three districts, two Floresville ISD students were killed and three were injured, and one La Vernia ISD student was killed and three were injured.
Stockdale ISD does not have confirmation yet, but district officials believe some students were involved.
First Baptist Church Pastor Frank Pomeroy said his 14-year-old daughter Annabelle Renee Pomeroy was also among those killed. Seguin ISD Superintendent Dr. Matthew Gutierrez said she was a seventh-grader at Briesemeister Middle School.
According to a message posted to the Sutherland Springs Community Association’s Facebook page, a memorial service will be held at 7 p.m. Monday at the Sutherland Springs Baseball Park at 610 6th St.
Officials said Kelley walked into the church around 11:20 a.m. Sunday and began shooting. He was armed with a Ruger AR 556 assault rifle, dressed in black tactical gear and wearing a ballistic vest.
Nearly 50 people were shot in total — 26 of whom have died. More than 20 others are being treated for injuries. Among the dead, ages range from just 18 months old to 77 years old.
Kelley shot and killed himself following the shooting at the church after a brief chase. Officials said he and his mother-in-law had a tumultuous relationship and said Kelley sent her a series of threatening text messages in days prior to the shooting. Kelley’s in-laws were members of the church but were not there at the time of the shooting.
Multiple law enforcement agencies — including the FBI, the Texas Rangers and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — are investigating.
La Vernia, Stockdale and Floresville superintendents address shootingPosted by Garrett Brnger on Monday, November 6, 2017