Ten people, including a retired Buffalo Police officer, were killed and three were wounded in a mass shooting May 14 at the Tops Market on Jefferson Avenue.
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Ten people were killed and three were injured in a mass shooting Saturday afternoon at the Tops Supermarket on Jefferson Avenue in Buffalo. Law enforcement officers are investigating the tragedy as a hate crime.
Here’s what we know about the victims so far:
- Eleven of the victims were African American.
- Two of them were white.
- Four of the victims were store employees.
- Out of the three hurt, two have been treated and released from the hospital.
Aaron Salter, 55
The store’s security guard, a retired Buffalo Police officer, is among those killed. He has been identified as Aaron Salter. Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said Salter was a “hero in our eyes.”
Ruth Whitfield, 86
Former Buffalo Fire Commissioner Garnell Whitfield spoke to 2 On Your Side’s Claudine Ewing Saturday evening and confirmed his mother, Ruth Whitfield, 86, was one of the victims in the shooting. Ruth Whitfield was on her way from visiting her husband in a nursing home and stopped at the store to get something to eat.
Pearly Young, 77
Pearly Young, 77, was killed Sunday shopping for groceries. She loved singing, dancing and being with family. Young ran a food pantry in the Central Park neighborhood for 25 years, feeding people every Saturday. She was a mother, grandmother and missionary.
Katherine Massey, 72
The Associated Press reports that also killed was shopper Katherine Massey, whose sister, Barbara Massey, called her “a beautiful soul.” Massey used to write for the Buffalo News. Her family told reporter Olivia Ugino from our sister station WBNS that Massey took care of everything and she was amazing.
Deacon Heyward Patterson, 67
Emma Henderson of our sister station WKYC confirmed with Leonard Lane that Deacon Heyward “Tenny” Patterson was killed. Patterson would often help drive people who needed transportation to the Jefferson Avenue store.
Celestine Chaney, 65
A granddaughter of Celestine Chaney told reporter Olivia Ugino from our sister station WBNS that Chaney was killed in the shooting. Chaney has six grandchildren and one great-grandchild. She was also a cancer survivor.
Roberta A. Drury, 32
Buffalo Police confirmed Roberta Drury, of Buffalo, was one of the victims who died in the shooting. Her friend Krystle Pino told 2 On Your Side’s Heather Ly Drury was was full of life, caring, happy, she cared about everyone. Drury was originally from Syracuse, but staying in Buffalo.
Margus D. Morrison, 52
Margus Morrison worked as a bus aid for First Student for the past four years. His companion said he loved kids and kids gravitated to him. He loved his job and would almost never call in.
Andre Mackneil, 53
Andre Mackneil of Auburn was 53. He was a father, brother, and uncle, and a friend. He was at Tops that day to buy his 3-year-old son a birthday cake.
Geraldine Talley, 62
Geraldine Talley, one of nine children, loved to be by the water. She and her fiance spent nearly three hours at the Foot of Ferry enjoying the day. Her sister says Gerri had just learned she was about to become a first-time grandma.
Buffalo Police said three people were hurt in the mass shooting: 20-year-old Zaire Goodman of Buffalo; a 50-year-old from Tonawanda, New York; and a 55-year-old from Lackawanna, New York.
Officials said they were all taken to ECMC.
Goodman and the 50-year-old have been treated and released from the hospital, according to police.
Zaire Goodman, 20
One of those injured is the son of a staffer in State Senator Tim Kennedy’s office. The Associated Press identified him as Zaire Goodman, 20. Goodman was shot in the neck but was recovering, Kennedy told a church service on Sunday. Goodman is the son of a staffer for Kennedy.
“I’m devastated. I’m angry,” Kennedy said. “And I’m thinking about the families who won’t welcome a loved one home tonight.”
The senator released the following statement reacting to Saturday’s events:
“Tonight, a member of my staff, my extended family, is at ECMC when she should be at home. She’s sitting in a hospital waiting room, because her beautiful, extraordinary son was shot while he was simply doing his job.
“To say that I’m heartbroken tonight doesn’t even do it justice. I’m devastated. I’m angry. And I’m thinking about the families who won’t welcome a loved one home tonight. All because an individual filled with pure evil made a calculated decision to senselessly take innocent lives. Let us be clear: this was a hate crime and an act of terrorism on our community. It was racially motivated, extremism in its most pure form.
“Although we may feel speechless, we will not remain silent.
“These victims and the families of these victims will see justice. While we grieve tonight, we will get through this together. I ask that you keep the families of those lost and injured in your prayers.”
(This article contains reporting from Associated Press reporter Carolyn Thompson)