Victims of Washington Navy Yard massacre: 'Arthur was always helping others, I wonder if he was doing that when he was shot'

 

Washington, DC

If after the Newtown school massacre last year, the US was in shock because of the tender ages of so many of the victims, it was the maturity of those gunned down during Monday’s deadly rampage at the Washington Navy Yard that hit home today. The youngest was 46, all had had long careers, some were grandparents.

It was only this morning that all the names of the victims had been released, because for some of the bereaved families’ confirmation had only come late on Monday. For the family of Sylvia Fraser, 53, huddled in her suburban Maryland home, it meant first learning she had been admitted to hospital. Only at 10pm did the phone call come with the news they had all dreaded. A network security systems manager, Ms Fraser, had passed away.

“He killed my sister,” Wendy Edmonds, a younger sister, wept as she talked to the Washington Post. But she added: “No matter how we feel, no matter what information we get from the FBI, we have got to forgive. We have to forgive.”

Arthur Daniels, 51, had worked for years installing furniture in federal buildings and on Monday he had a job at the Navy Yard. Witnesses said he and a co-worker had attempted to flee the shooter, Aaron Alexis, and that he was franticly pushing the button for the lift when he was shot in the back. A grandfather of nine, he reportedly fell to the ground instantly. 

“He has this great personality and is always helping others,” said Lewis R. Yancey II, the owner of the furniture company. “And I have to wonder if he was doing that when he was shot.”

Part of a team designing and building amphibious assault vessels, Michael Arnold, 59, had recently spent his spare time building his own light aircraft in his basement. Now it will never be finished. “How can you get up in the morning and go to work and have that happen? How do bad things like that happen to good people?” an uncle, Steve Hunter, asked. A former naval captain who retired last year he had been working as a consultant partly at the Navy Yard.

A utilities foreman, Kenneth Bernard Proctor, 46, didn’t work in Building 197, but habitually went to the glass-walled cafeteria in the one of its two atriums for breakfast before starting work. And so he did on Monday unaware that Alexis was soon to open fire on the area from a third-floor gallery. “It was a routine thing for him to go there in the morning, and unfortunately it happened,” his ex-wife Evelyn Proctor said.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
'Molecular Man +1+1+1' by Jonathan Borofsky at Yorkshire Sculpture park
tv
News
Glamour magazine hosts a yoga class with Yogalosophy author Mandy Ingber on June 10, 2013 in New York City.
newsFather Padraig O'Baoill said the exercise was 'unsavoury' in a weekly parish newsletter
Extras
indybest
News
people'She is unstoppable', says Jean Paul Gaultier at Paris show
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Service Technician

£30000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitment Company...

Energy Sales Co-ordinator

£20000 - £25000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

Energy Sales Consultant

£25000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitment Company...

Web / Digital Analyst - Google Analytics, Omniture

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My client who are a leading publisher in...

Day In a Page

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice
Hollywood targets Asian audiences as US films enjoy record-breaking run at Chinese box office

Hollywood targets Asian audiences

The world's second biggest movie market is fast becoming the Hollywood studios' most crucial
Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app - and my mum keeps trying to hook me up!'

Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app'

Five years on from its launch and Grindr is the world's most popular dating app for gay men. Its founder Joel Simkhai answers his critics, describes his isolation as a child
Autocorrect has its uses but it can go rogue with embarrassing results - so is it time to ditch it?

Is it time to ditch autocorrect?

Matthew J X Malady persuaded friends to message manually instead, but failed to factor in fat fingers and drunk texting
10 best girls' summer dresses

Frock chick: 10 best girls' summer dresses

Get them ready for the holidays with these cool and pretty options 
Westminster’s dark secret: Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together

Westminster’s dark secret

Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Dulce et decorum est - a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Dulce et decorum est: a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality
Google tells popular music website to censor album cover art in 'sexually explicit content' ban

Naked censorship?

The strange case of Google, the music website and the nudity take-down requests
Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

As England take on India at Trent Bridge, here is our pick of the high-performing bats to help you up your run-count this summer 
Brazil vs Germany World Cup 2014 comment: David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

Captain appears to give up as shocking 7-1 World Cup semi-final defeat threatens ramifications in Brazil