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Texas church shooting victims: Pregnant mother, children among lives lost

Candlelight vigil
Families of victims killed in church shooting mourn loved ones 02:04

shooting at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, shocked the small community where at least 26 people died and at least 20 others were injured Sunday.

A pregnant mother and young children are among the dead -- and the Halcombe family lost eight of its members Sunday.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott called the attack the deadliest mass shooting in his state's history and President Trump called it an "act of evil." Officials said 23 people were found dead inside the church, two outside, and one died after being taken to a hospital.

The gunman has been identified as 26-year-old Devin Patrick Kelley. A motive has not been revealed as the investigation continues, but President Trump has said it was "a mental health problem of the highest degree," and not a "guns situation."

CBS affiliate KENS-TV writes that some residents don't know if their family members are injured, at the hospital, or deceased. The station adds that some family members' cars -- which have been in the church parking lots since Sunday morning -- were still there Sunday night.

Officials said the ages of those shot range from 18 months to 77 years.

Here's what we know so far:

Annabelle Pomeroy

Annabelle Pomeroy Facebook

Annabelle Pomeroy, the 14-year-old daughter of the church's pastor, was one of the victims killed in the shooting, her mother, Sherri Pomeroy, told CBS News via text message.

"My husband and I were ironically out of town in two different states. We lost our 14-year-old daughter today and many friends," she said Sunday.

She added, "Neither of us have made it back into town yet to personally see the devastation. I am at the Charlotte airport trying to get home as soon as I can."

Robert and Shani Corrigan

Shani and Robert Corrigan Facebook

CBS News affiliate WNEM-TV reports Robert Corrigan and his wife, Shani, were among the victims killed in the attack, according to the Clare County Director of Veterans' Services Renee Haley.

"This is a huge tragedy, not only for the family, for this small town," Haley said.

Corrigan moved to Sutherland Springs two years ago after a decorated 30-year career in the Air Force, CBS News Michelle Miller reports.

As chief master sergeant of the 55th medical group at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska, he led the largest and busiest in the Air Combat Command, running continuous operations in the Middle East and North Africa since 1991.

The Michigan couple is survived by their two sons, who are currently placed on active duty. Reuters adds that the couple graduated from Harrison High School in Farmington Hills, Michigan, lived in Floresville, Texas.

Chief Master Sgt. Robert Corrigan  CBS News

Ward family

Joann Ward Reuters

Emily Garza, who was just 7 years old, died in Sunday's attack. She was shot and underwent surgery, but succumbed to her injuries.

A relative, Leslie Ward, told the Dallas Morning News that her mother Joann is among the dead. Joann's husband is Chris Ward. A friend confirmed Joann's passing on Facebook by writing, "Is it possible to physically feel your heart break??"

Two of the Ward's 5-year-old children were hit Sunday.

Brooke Ward (bottom L), Emily Garza (top C), Ryland Ward (bottom R) Facebook

Brooke Ward was killed and Ryland Ward was struck four times by gunshots and was recovering from surgery, CBS News' Michelle Miller reports.

An 8-year-old sibling, McKinley Ward, hid under the church pews during the shooting, Miller reports. The gunman's bullets shot the glasses off her face.

Holcombe family

Handout photo of Bryan Holcombe and his wife Karla Plain Holcombe
Bryan Holcombe and his wife Karla Plain Holcombe Reuters

Eight members of the extended Holcombe family were killed in the shooting.

The Associated Press reports Crystal Holcombe and her in-laws Karla and Bryan Holcombe died in Sunday's attack. Crystal was eight months pregnant. Bryan was filling in as pastor on the day of the attack, CBS News' Michelle Miller reports.

Crystal Holcombe Facebook

Bryan and Karla's son, Marc Daniel Holcombe, was also killed with his 1-year-old child, Noah Holcombe, according to Miller.

Marc Daniel Holcombe Facebook

Three of Crystal's children --  Megan, Emily and Greg Hill -- were among the dead, AP reports, and her husband John lost his brother and a toddler niece. John survived.

Miller reports that Crystal posted regularly about her kids' accomplishments.

Pictured are three Holcombe children who died. Facebook

Earl Seesengood is a close family friend who spoke to CBS News.

"It is hard to stop and think about it, because the magnitude of the loss of some people is just unfathomable," Seesengood said.

Nick Uhligh, a cousin, told the AP that Bryan Holcombe did prison ministry with the church, and that he would go to the prison with a ukulele and sing to the inmates. AP adds that Nick didn't attend the church Sunday because he was out late the night before.

Lula White

Lula White Facebook

CBS News has confirmed that Lula White, the 71-year-old grandmother of the gunman's estranged wife Danielle Shields Kelley, was among those killed.

The Reuters news agency states that White's niece Amy Backus wrote on Facebook: "I have no doubt where she is right now. She is in Heaven laying her crowns and jewels at the feet of Jesus and celebrating." Backus added: "I love and will miss you Aunt Lula Woicinski White."

Tara Elyse McNulty

Tara McNulty Facebook

Reuters writes that McNulty was at the church Sunday with her two children who were wounded but survived, according to a GoFundMe account created by a friend who called McNulty "a great employee."

"She was conscientious, engaging, and always willing to do the little things," Woodall wrote. "She was a sweet, kind and loving woman, mother and daughter and will be greatly missed by many."

Scott and Karen Marshall 

Scott and Karen Marshall CBS Pittsburgh

A retired couple who met while serving in the Air Force together more than 30 years ago were fatally struck by gunfire, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Scott and Karen Marshall returned to Texas after completing an assignment at Maryland's Andrews Air Force Base, The Associated Press reports.

Scott's father, Marshall, told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that his son and daughter-in-law were first-time visitors to the church.

CBS Pittsburgh spoke with Scott's father who confirmed the news Monday on his 85th birthday.

"Heck of a birthday present," Robert said. "It's a shame that you can go pray and be shot up."

The family knew something was wrong when they saw news reports showing Scott's car parked in front of the church.

"We were praying that they were just going to be in the hospital, injured, not found dead in the church," Holly Hannum, the victim's sister, said.

Their worst fears were confirmed when Scott never answered their calls or texts.

"Scott and Karen were both wonderful people. Everybody that met them loved them, and they're going to be missed," Laurie Youngblood, the victim's sister, said.

"To lose them like that, it's heartbreaking," Fran Marshall, Scott's stepmother, said.

Robert says his son was a veteran who worked on jet engines and Karen was planning to retire from the military. His son was in Pittsburgh last week for an early birthday celebration before returning to Texas.

Now, Robert is trying to fly to Texas to be with his three adult grandchildren, but it may not be easy.

"We have to get oxygen for me so I can fly. I can't take this down," Robert said. "I have to be with the kids."

Richard and Theresa Rodriguez

Richard Rodriguez

Evangelina Santos told Univision that her brother, 51-year-old Richard Rodriguez, and his wife, Theresa, were both killed by gunfire while attending Sunday's church service.

Authorities notified family members of the couple's death around 11 p.m. that night.

Santos told Univision that Richard was a retired railroad worker.

Haley Krueger 

Haley Krueger GoFundMe / Charlene Uhl

Charlene Uhl told CNN and People magazine that her 16-year-old daughter, Haley, was among the victims of the shooting.

"She was a vibrant 16-year-old that loved live," Uhl said. "She loved her church. She was always hyper and ready for anything. She wanted to go to school and be a nurse in the NICU. She loved babies. She had two nephews and adored both of them."

People magazine reports Krueger arrived early to church to help prepare breakfast on the day of the shooting. 

Sunday's attack occurred on the eighth anniversary of the Nov. 9, 2009 massacre of 13 people at the Fort Hood Army base in central Texas, the Reuters news agency points out. The suspect in that incident was convicted and awaits execution.

It comes two and a half years after another horrific church shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, when a white gunman killed nine black parishioners in a racially motivated attack. The  gunman in that case was also convicted sentenced to death.

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