Friends and family are paying tribute to those killed in the tragic mass shooting in a Texan home on Sunday, Sept. 10.
A group of friends had gathered to watch a Dallas Cowboys football game when a gunman entered the property and opened fire around 8 p.m. on Sunday evening, killing seven people and wounding two, authorities said. One of those wounded died in hospital yesterday, bringing the total number of victims slain by the gunman to eight.
“We’ve never had a shooting of this magnitude, we’ve never seen this many victims before,” said Plano Police Chief Gregory Rushin at a press conference on Monday.
When a police officer arrived at the scene he heard gunshots coming from the house and saw “shooting victims down the backyard.” The police officer, who has not been named, saw the gunman and shot him dead.
Plano in north Texas is around 20 miles northwest of Dallas and has previously topped a Forbes study for America’s safest place to live, for its low violent crime rate and low rate of fatal car accidents.
The mass shooting has shaken the community. While the police have not yet officially released the identities of those affected, friends and family have started to pay tribute to their loved ones on social media.
Tyler Wilde, a friend of victim Darryl Hawkins remembered him as a genuine and humble.
Local Fox4News anchor Allison Harris reported that Hawkins’s parents visited the crime scene on Monday and his sister described him as “the nicest person.”
Another victim, Tony Cross in his 30s, has been remembered as “boisterous” and “vivacious.”
“He was boisterous, vivacious, and had a laugh that you knew came from the core of his being and made you want to laugh that hard with him,” his friend Rachel Vinyard told the Austin-American Statesman.
“He was himself 100 percent of the time: fun and genuine. The world needed a Tony Cross,” she said.
His uncle Allen Richards posted on Facebook: “My nephew was killed in the Plano shooting last night. Please keep his family in your prayers. His name was Tony Cross.”
Meredith Lane Hight was a victim and the home owner and had recently filed for divorce from Spencer Hight, according to her mother, Debbie Lane.
Plano Police Chief Gregory Rushin confirmed on Monday that the suspect shooter was known to those in the property and that it wasn’t a “stranger-on-stranger crime” but did not elaborate on any further details.