SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas - Originally from Harrison, Michigan, Robert Corrigan, 51, had moved to Texas, where he became part of the praise team at the Sutherland Springs church.
Robert Corrigan had served in the Air Force for 29 years, according to Renee Haley, director of Veterans Services in Clare County, Michigan. He was a track star in high school and valedictorian of his class, CNN affiliate WWTV reported.
Robert Corrigan and his wife Shani were high school sweethearts who married in 1985 after graduation.
Their son, Forrest, died last year, and the pastor at First Baptist officiated the funeral. Two other sons are on active duty, Haley said in a statement.
Robert Corrigan, known to those who loved him as Bobby, "loved life, everything he did was to the extreme," his uncle, Bob Sommers, told WWTV. "He was a pleasure to be around."
As members of the Harrison community gathered to remember the victims, Robert's mother, Jean-Anne Corrigan, told CNN affiliate WDIV that she believes both her son and his wife are in heaven.
"God is in control, and I know that my son and my daughter-in-law are in the arms of Jesus," she said. "I know that."
David Roll, who recently served with Robert Corrigan at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska, said he "was extremely intelligent but also had one of the zaniest senses of humor you could imagine."
Corrigan, a chief master sergeant and the hospital superintendent on the base, wrote a song for an anti-drinking and driving campaign on the base, Roll said in a Facebook message to CNN.
"He was extremely charitable and would help anyone, including taking in a homeless friend of his late son," Roll said.