CHESAPEAKE, Va. — Every night, as they clocked in The employees of a Walmart in Chesapeake collected in The break room.
They talked and prepared for the long shift ahead. Then they got to work cleaning up and stocking the store for tomorrow. The hours ran late and the work could be tiring, but members of the team — some of whom had worked there for years — said they were often buoyed by the camaraderie they found.
“Our overnight crew, we were a family when I was there,” Shaundrayia, 27, who was a 27-year-old employee at the Walmart in A strip mall in Chesapeake for many years, starting around 2015 and ending in 2018. “Everyone loved each other,” She remembered.
On Tuesday night, six Walmart Authorities say that many employees were part this tight-knit team and were fatally shot by a long-time night crew supervisor who opened fire. in The break room, where the team used to meet so often.
Employees who had been working at the store for years were among those who died: Randall Blevins – a loved father and coin collector; Lorenzo Gamble – the father to two sons who loved the Mustang he drove; Brian Pendleton – a maintenance employee whom coworkers said they leaned on Thank you for your support. Kellie Pyle, who was due to marry, and other younger employees were among the victims. in Tyneka Johnson was also killed the following year. Tyneka, who neighbors and relatives described as being kindhearted, was also killed. Authorities said that the 16-year old boy who worked in the store, but whose identity was not yet known, was also killed.
Officials confirmed that two more were being treated for injuries at the hospital by Thursday. Authorities said that the gunman died of self-inflicted injuries from a gunshot. The police have not provided any information on the motives for the shooting but say they will continue their investigation.
Some employees and their family members came with them on Thursday: Counseling and support at a hotel near the store; some sobbed while being escorted. in. “My heart hurts for our associates and the Chesapeake community who have lost or injured loved ones,” Doug McMillon, president and chief executive of WalmartIt was said in Make a statement on Wednesday.
Police identified the gunman as Andre Bing (31) a 31-year-old supervisor who worked as an overnight supervisor at Walmart Since 2010. Nathan Sinclair, a former manager, stated that at the start of each shift, he would gather his staff for a meeting and hand out assignments. on An earlier shift.
Former employees described Mr. Bing a rude supervisor who raised concerns about government surveillance. His neighbors described him quiet and said they rarely saw him except when he was out mowing the grass. He would often leave work at night to return home. in The morning. “That’s all you’d see from him,” Brittany Jennings (37), a neighbor.
Ms. Johnson, who was in Her early 20s was a time when she was sweetly described by her neighbors. She only recently started working in the store.
“She was young and wanted to make her own money,” According to a cousin, Theodore Johnson, 41 (and adding that Ms. Johnson was her mother), ”
Kellie Pyle, 52 years old, was generous and kindhearted. She had plans to marry. in In the near future, The Associated Press reported. She had adult children in Kentucky had planned to travel to Virginia. in The aftermath of the massacre.
“We love her,” Gwendolyn Bowe Baker Spencer, the mother of Ms. Pyle’s partner, told The A.P. “She was going to marry my son next year. She was an awesome, kind individual — yes, she was.”
Randall Blevins, 70, was a longtime member of the store’s team that sets prices and arranges merchandise, according to Ms. Reese, who said she knew him as “Mr. Randy.”
His daughter Cassandra Yeats said that Mr. Blevins was a fan of the Norfolk Admirals hockey team, photography, and collecting coins.
“He never missed a single day of work,” She spoke. “He loved his family and supported everyone.”
A relative of the victim of the shooting, aged 16, said that the boy was attending local high school and taking the courses. Walmart To help his family, he works overnight. “He wanted to help a little bit,” Rosy Perez was the friend of the family. “He was a very good child.”
Mr. Pendleton, another of the victims, was a maintenance employee whom a former employee recalled as one of the store’s hardest workers.
“If you had any problems, you could go to Brian,” Josh Johnson, an ex-employee, worked for the store for nearly two years. “He would go to bat for you and help you with anything.”
Ms. Reese stated that she was especially close to Mr. Pendleton.
“He never raised his voice, never had a bad bone in his body,” She spoke. “Nobody could ever say anything bad about that man. He was one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met in my life.”
Mr. Gamble had previously worked at Walmart According to his mother, clocking has been going on for approximately 15 years in Returning home at night in Morning in His silver and black Mustang. Linda Gamble, Linda’s mother, stated that her son was the quiet one. in The family was blessed with two sons.
Ms. Gamble was preparing for Thanksgiving on Tuesday night when she heard about a shooting at the local police station. Walmart. Her husband drove her to Chesapeake Conference Center where authorities told families to wait for word on Their relatives.
Ms. Gamble remembered that he returned to her a few hours later and she told him. “Your baby’s gone.”
“All I could do,” She stated, “was fall out the chair and scream.”
Reporting was provided by Eduardo Medina, Nicholas Bogel–Burroughs, Michael Corkery, Jenny Gross Rich Griset. Sheelagh McNeill, Kitty Bennett Kirsten Noyes Contributed research