SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas (CBSNewYork) — The victims of Sunday’s deadly mass shooting at a Texas church that left 26 people dead range in age from just over a year old to those in their 70’s.
We’re slowly learning who they were, including a 7-year-old girl and her mother, as well as the pastor’s teenage daughter.
The congregation’s leader, Pastor Frank Pomeroy, was out of town when he got the news that his 14-year-old girl was killed in the shooting at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas.
PHOTOS: Texas Church Massacre
“We’ve had a long night with our children and grandbabies we have left,” Pomeroy said Monday.
His wife, Sherri, delivered their statement when the pastor was overcome with emotion. She said the only comfort is that their daughter, Annabelle, was surrounded by her community.
“We were a very close family,” Sherri said. “We ate together, we laughed together, we cried together, and we worshiped together.”
One family in particular has been devastated beyond comprehension. Eight of the 26 victims were related to John Holcombe, including his pregnant wife, Crystal. Three of the couple’s children were killed, along with his parents — Bryan and Karla.
His brother Danny was also slain, along with Danny’s 18-month old daughter, Noah Grace — the youngest of the 26 victims.
Joann Ward was also among the victims, along with her 7-year-old daughter.
“We’re a small, as we call it, a small little redneck town in the country,”parishioner Gloria Jimenez said. “Why this church? Why people that I grew up with?”
Jimenez says she spent many Sundays at the church.
“Heavy hurting for the victims, for the families,” she said. “There’s no words to describe it. Everybody knows everybody.”
Pastor Pomeroy asked the community to turn to their faith. He added he didn’t understand why the shooting happened, but he knows God does.
The were another 20 people wounded in the shooting, ten of whom remain in critical condition Monday night.