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‘Manchester Massacre’ Victim Remembered in South Windsor

Omar Thornton (credit: WFSB)

Omar Thornton (credit: WFSB)

SOUTH WINDSOR, Conn. (CBS 2) — Family and friends gathered Friday in an outpouring of grief and support to remember one of the victims of Tuesday’s shootings in Manchester.

Hundreds turned out at a South Windsor funeral home to remember 60-year-old Craig Pepin, who died in the deadly shooting rampage at Hartford Distributors.

Pepin is being held up as one of the tragedy’s heroes. Witnesses say when he heard the first shots, instead of running towards safety, he frantically moved to warn others, CBS 2’s Tony Aiello reports.

Friends remembered Pepin as a “tremendous person” and called his actions “amazing.”

“If it was me I [would have] been hiding behind a dumpster, or in a dumpster,” Leo Bravakis said.

Meanwhile, police refuse to say whether their investigation into the “Manchester Massacre” includes shooter Omar Thornton’s racism claims.

Company officials — including president Ross Hollander — say Thornton never reported any harassment.

“Omar Thornton was embraced as a member of our team and judged purely on the merits of his work,” Hollander said.

Another friend of Pepin’s says he still can’t believe Thornton took to the violence to show his anger and frustrations.

“To take it out this way and call the way he did, it was outrageous,” Frank Macchi said.

Hartford Distributors says it will cooperate with any investigation.