“I love you, I’ve been shot at work,” was the final text message Terra Pinkard received from her husband who was one of the five people killed in last week’s Aurora, Illinois, shooting massacre.
In a Facebook post on Sunday, the grieving widow called the day she learned about the workplace killings “a literal nightmare.”
Her husband Josh was among the victims who were fatally shot Friday at water valve manufacturer Henry Pratt Co. when an employee opened fire. Six law officials were also wounded.
“It took me several times reading it for it to hit me that it was for real,” Pinkard wrote of the text from her husband.
“I called his plant and a lady answered and said she was barricaded in her room and police were everywhere. Of course, my heart dropped.”
On having to deliver the news to her family, Pinkard said, “I told my children their dad did not make it and is in heaven with Jesus. I’ve never had to do something that hard.”
She described her husband as “brilliant” and her “best friend” and “the man I would have leaned on during devastation like this who would tell me it’s ok Terra, it is all going to be fine.”
“The man who was dying and found the clarity of mind for just a second to send me one last text to let me know he would always love me,” she added.
The gunman, 45-year-old Gary Montez Martin — who died during a shootout with cops — arrived at the warehouse on Friday for a meeting with human resources and was informed his position at the company had been terminated. The Huff Post reports that Martin snapped at the news and then opened fire with a .40 Smith & Wesson handgun that had an attached laser.
“My heart goes out to the victims and their families who simply went to work today like any other day,” Aurora Police Chief Kristen Ziman said in a news conference Friday night.
“Mueller Water Products is shocked and deeply saddened by the horrific tragedy that occurred today at our Henry Pratt facility,” Mueller Water Products, which owns Henry Pratt, said in a statement on the company’s website.
“Our entire focus is on the health and wellbeing of our colleagues, and we are committed to providing any and all support to them and their families,” the statement continued.