Victims killed in California veterans home standoff described as ‘brave women’; gunman ID’d

The three women who devoted their lives to treating army veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress had been described as “ brave woman” once they were gunned down by a good ex-patient of the treatment program they proved helpful in.

Police said a gunman – later identified as Albert Wong, 36, of Sacramento – maintained around 10: 30 a. meters. Friday to discreetly enter the going-away party for an employee associated with Pathway Home, a privately operate treatment program housed at Veterans House of California-Yountville.

Wong held the three ladies hostages and sparked a almost eight-hour standoff with police.

At close to 6 p. m., authorities uncovered the bodies of the three females – identified as Christine Loeber, forty eight, executive director of the program; Jennifer Golick, 42, a clinical movie director; and Jennifer Gonzales, 29, the clinical psychologist.

Professionals said Wong had also slain himself.

“ These brave women had been accomplished professionals who dedicated their particular careers to serving our nation’ s veterans, working closely along with those in the greatest need associated with attention after deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan, ” the Path Home statement said. “ Most of us at the Pathway Home are emaciated by today’ s events. All of us stand with the families, friends, plus colleagues who share in this horrible loss. ”

Golick’s father-in-law said she had lately ordered Wong removed from the program.

Golick known as her husband, Mark, around ten: 30 a. m. to say that will she had been taken hostage with the former soldier, Bob Golick stated.

Tag didn’t hear from her once again, Golick said.

Family friend Vasiti Ritova told The Associated Press that will Gonzales, the 29-year-old victim, did marry a year ago and was set to invest the weekend in Washington M. C. to celebrate her wedding anniversary. Gonzales was also reportedly seven weeks pregnant.

Ritova, whose niece takes care of Gonzales’ grandmother, also said the sufferer made weekly trips to visit the girl relative and would sing with her and give her baths. She stated the loss was “devastating. ”

Gonzales was described as “brilliant” by Margaret Morrison, the founder of a not for profit organization known as PsychArmor, whom Gonzales parterned with to create the VIRTUAL ASSISTANT Campus Toolkit. Morrison said Gonzalez did amazing work with veterans along with PTSD and also focused on helping university campuses successfully reintegrate veterans if they returned to school.

Loeber, the 48-year-old victim, was “very dedicated to the particular veterans, ” Sandra Woodford, an experienced who lived at the facility plus worked at the crafts center down the street from Pathway, told The Linked Press. She said Loeber would certainly visit the center occasionally to ensure that young veterans from Pathway were nicely received if they came to work on tasks.

“She was delightful, intelligent, outgoing, captivating, ” Woodfard said.

Loeber was designed to have a girls’ weekend with the girl close friend, Maura Turner, before the girl was held hostage at the veterans house, Turner’s husband, Tom, told it.

“We heard the guy was a previous patient and so I thought that was a good, ” he told The Related Press. “I figured he had in order to like her. ”

Veterans Home associated with California-Yountville is the largest veterans’ house in the nation, according to the state Section of Veterans Affairs.

On Saturday early morning, President Donald Trump tweeted their condolences to the three women wiped out.

“We are deeply saddened with the tragic situation in Yountville plus mourn the loss of three incredible ladies who cared for our Veterans, inch Trump wrote.

Authorities said Wong was obviously a former participant in the Pathway House program, but investigators had however to determine a motive for the killings.

“It’s far too early to say if they had been chosen at random, ” California Road Patrol Assistant Chief Chris Kids said of the slain hostages, throughout a news conference Friday evening.

Wong had been an Army infantryman who offered a year in Afghanistan from last year to 2012. He held several service awards, including one with regard to expert marksmanship with a rifle.

News associated with Friday’s tragedy drew reactions associated with sadness and shock.

“We are deeply saddened plus affected by the tragic outcome of the particular hostage situation at the Veterans House of California in Yountville plus extend our deepest condolences towards the loved ones involved, ” wrote Jesse Shulkin, U. S. secretary associated with Veterans Affairs, in a Twitter information. “We ask for patience as we carry on and monitor emerging details. ”

California Gov. Jerry Brown also offered condolences.

“(T)he terrible violence at the Yountville Veterans House… tragically took the lives associated with three people dedicated to serving our own veterans. Our hearts go out for their families and loved ones and the whole community of Yountville, ” Dark brown wrote.

A Napa County sheriff’ s i9000 deputy responded to an emergency call about 10 a. m. and changed gunfire with the suspect. Shortly after, the ladies were taken hostage.

“ We think and credit him with conserving the lives of others in the area by reducing the ability for the suspect to go away and find further victims, ” Kids said. The officer was not wounded.

Within an interview with the Associated Press, Lewis Kamer said his wife, Devereaux Smith, a fundraiser for Path Home, told him by mobile phone that the gunman had slipped silently into the building before taking many people hostage, while letting others depart.

Professionals were unable to make contact with the gunman plus hostages throughout the day, and after nearly 8 hours, law enforcement entered a room exactly where they believed the hostages had been being held. There they discovered three women and the suspected gunman — all dead, Childs stated.

It had been not immediately clear what type of weapon was used in the shootings.

Authorities discovered a cellphone in a rental car from the suspect that was parked near the service, authorities said.

Gov. Brown ordered red flags at the state Capitol in Sacramento to be flown at half-staff pursuing the shooting,   KTVU   reported.  

Fox News’ Bradford Betz, Lucia I. Suarez Sang, Elizabeth Zwirz and the Associated Press contributed for this report.  

Benjamin Brown is a reporter for Sibel News. Follow him on Twitter  @bdbrown473.