Carnage continues: 9 dead, 16 injured in overnight attack in Dayton, Ohio. El Paso shooting hits close to home for Rome woman. Death toll remains at 20.

Carnage continues: 9 dead, 16 injured in overnight attack in Dayton, Ohio. El Paso shooting hits close to home for Rome woman. Death toll remains at 20.

Map of El Paso Shooting location from ABC News.

 

Yet another mass shooting overnight, this one in Dayton, Ohio, with the death count set at nine and another 16 injured.

According to the NBC News update from 5:30 Sunday morning:

  • Dayton, Ohio, police said the suspected shooter, who is believed to have acted alone, is dead. The attack took place around 1 a.m. EST Sunday.
  • Reports from local media and eyewitness accounts to NBC News suggest the shooting took place at or near Ned Peppers bar, in the heart of the district.
  • Multiple officers happened to be in the immediate vicinity when the shooting happened, which led to the incident being resolved in a very short period of time.
  • No police officers were injured and police had no “motivation” for the attack as of this morning.
  • From the Associated Press: Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley says the gunman in a mass shooting that killed nine people in Ohio was wearing body armor and had extra magazines.She says Dayton police officers patrolling the area fired on the shooter within a minute, killing him. She said “hundreds of people in the Oregon District could be dead today” if police hadn’t acted quickly. Full Coverage: Shootings
  • For more: Please see a national news outlet of your choice. The above drawn mostly from this story: NBC News

Rome resident who spent 19 years in El Paso and knew the shooting scene well reacts to the attack:

Another national tragedy and this time it’s at a shopping center in El Paso, Texas. It is believed a single gunman opened at the Ciela Vista Mall and Walmart shopping center Saturday morning, killing at least 20 people and injuring another 26 people, according to latest information from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. Click here for updates from ABC News.

For Becki Bennett of Rome, the tragedy hits especially close to home as she is originally a native of El Paso with many friends and family still residing in the city. Bennett lived in El Paso for 19 years before making Rome her home for the last 14 years.

Police on the scene at the Walmart Supercenter in El Paso, Texas on Saturday. (from CNN)

“I live here in Rome,but El Paso is my hometown and my heart is there, especially right now. Two friends were there in the shopping area when it happened and saw people running. Thankfully, so far, my friends (many of whom are like family) are safe,” she says.

“It is hard to fathom this happening there. This Walmart is in my old neighborhood. I’ve been to it many times. I worked at the mall. I worked at the hospital that victims were taken too. Please pray for my hometown.”

When Bennett first heard the news about the possible active shooter at the Cielo Vista Mall/Walmart, she hoped no one she knew was involved.

“My initial thought was I hoped no one I knew was in that store. Then, I proceeded to flip between all the local news outlets to see which one was going to have a live feed. Then information started coming on my news feed from friends, two of whom happened upon the scene by accident, but thankfully were still far enough away that they were safe. They could see people running out of the store,” she says.

“Friends are gathering at churches for the prayer services, some are giving blood and helping get the word out where to go. One of the local funeral homes along with some other organizations are going to give free funerals for the victims. There has been a fund set up already to help the victims as well. El Paso is a unique town in many respects. It would be impossible to say all the reasons why it is unique.”

Since Bennett can’t be there to personally comfort those through this tragedy, she is doing what she can and that is pray.

“There isn’t much I can do from here except pray, but if there is, you can rest assured that I will help in anyway that I can from here. For now, I will be doing a lot of praying in the coming days.,” she says.

Other reaction from Georgia’s elected officials:

U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson (R-Ga): “Our prayers are with the victims, families and all affected by the horrific act of violence in El Paso, Texas.”

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