Mass Shooting at Virginia Beach Municipal Center Kills 12

Among the victims are 11 public works employees and a contractor

Eleven public works employees and a contractor are dead after a mass shooting conducted by a 40-year-old public utilities engineer who worked in the sewer and water department in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

The gunman was a longtime city employee who had handed in his resignation notice hours before shooting indiscriminately at people inside the Virginia Beach Municipal Center, according to The New York Times.

Two members of the Water Environment Federation’s Operations Challenge community — from the team Terminal Velocity — were victims in the shooting. Robert Williams died as a result of injuries, while Steve Motley is expected to make a recovery.

“We sympathize with all those impacted by this senseless tragedy and pray for Steve’s speedy recovery,” wrote former Operations Challenge Committee Chairman John Trofatter in a Facebook update. “We will always remember Bobby’s kind and gentle nature, his competitive spirit and his camaraderie. The Operations Challenge family experienced a crushing blow with the sad news from Virginia Beach, but will continue to grow stronger while always remembering and honoring Bobby’s spirit and those that went before him.”

The American Water Works Association and its Virginia Section also extended condolences to all those affected by the tragedy. Both current and former AWWA members were among the lives lost in the shooting.

“The entire AWWA family grieves with Virginia Beach,” says AWWA President David Rager. “The victims and families of those lost and injured, our friends and colleagues at the Virginia Beach utilities, and the broader Virginia Beach community are on our minds and in our hearts.”

Many members of the Virginia Beach Public Utilities Department are active with AWWA and volunteers of the Virginia Section. The Virginia Section co-sponsored a Water Tribute June 4 to remember those who died.

“The VA AWWA Board is deeply saddened by this terrible tragedy,” says Virginia Section Chair Tim Mitchell. “We extend our deepest condolences to all who have been impacted because of this horrific violence. There are few words that can comfort at a time like this, but know you are in our thoughts and prayers. We are not only colleagues, but extended water family. VA AWWA continues to offer our unwavering support.”

The New York Times listed the names of the 12 victims here.

Government buildings were scheduled to reopen June 4, and those mourning the tragedy have been laying flowers at a memorial near the municipal center.


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