I knew Gabe Zimmerman (Director of community outreach) and I wept over reading about his senseless killing yesterday at the Safeway on Oracle/Ina, when his employer CD 8 Congresswoman Gabrielle “Gabby” Giffords was also shot in the head allegedly by Jared Lee Loughner (who is in custody). 19 people were injured in the shooting, 6 have died.
Apparently former Tucson Citizen Associate Editor Mark Kimble (who now works for Gabby as a speech writer) was there as well, helping with constituents, but he was not injured.
Also shot and injured were Gifford’s District Director Ron Barber and part-time outreach coordinator Pam Simon. I just met Pam at an Arizona Women’s Political Caucus holiday event in December, when she spoke on Gabby’s behalf (click here). Both are recovering at University Medical Center here in Tucson.
More here at AZ Central about Gifford’s aides:
Gabe was with Congresswoman Giffords from the beginning as a field organizer during her first campaign back in 2006. I remember how thrilled he was to then become part of her local Tucson staff, and I’ve communicated off and on with him since then. And the news article says he was engaged to be married. He was only 30 years old when he was killed yesterday. He was a great guy, very dedicated and passionate about helping constituents, in representing the Congresswoman.
A private memorial service has been scheduled for January 15. I also serve on the Casitas of Broadway board with his mother Emily Nottingham, retired City of Tucson community services administrator. Heartfelt condolences to the Ross Zimmerman family.
And pray for Gabby, who’s still in critical condition in the ICU (intensive care unit) following brain surgery at University Medical Center, on Campbell Avenue. She is married to NASA astronaut Mark Kelly, and has two step daughters Claudia and Claire Kelly.
List of the other deceased victims, most of whom were Giffords’ constituents apparently waiting in line to speak with her at her “Congress on Your Corner” event:
(There are a few discrepancies in the names of these victims, with the news coming in so quickly since yesterday’s shooting).
-John Roll, 63, a federal district court judge (Chief Judge in U.S. District Court for AZ)
- Dorwan Stoddard, 76, a volunteer at Mountain Ave. Church of Christ (his wife Mavanell was also shot & injured, but is expected to recover)
-Christina-Taylor Green, 9, a student at Mesa Verde Elementary
-Dorothy Morris, 76 (not Murray as originally reported)
-Phyllis Schneck, 79, a retiree from the East Coast
Condolences to all the families of these innocent victims.
1/13/11 Update: Gabe’s obituary in the Arizona Daily Star (linked through Tucsoncitizen.com):
1/14/11 update: names of the 13 additional persons injured at the shooting from Pima County Sheriff’s Dept, including Congresswoman Giffords:
Susan Hileman, 58 (neighbor of Christina-Taylor Green who took her to the event)
Mavanell Stoddard, 75 (wife of Dorwan)
Pamela Simon, 63 (aide to Giffords)
Ronald Barber, 65 (aide to Giffords)
Gabrielle Giffords, 40 (the Congresswoman)
James Tucker, 58
Kenneth Veeder, 75
George Morris, 76 (husband of Dorothy)
James Fuller, 63
Randy Gardner, 60
Mary Reed, 52
Kenneth Dorushka, 63
Bill Badger, 74