Funerals for 14 Killed in California Massacre Somberly Begin

11 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Family, friends, and police gather at first of 14 funerals for victims of San Bernardino shooting massacre.

Yvette Velasco was born with an “angel smile” on Easter Sunday in 1988, her family said. Robert Velasco strode past a spray of white roses and tenderly kissed his daughter’s casket before delivering a heartbreaking eulogy for his 27-year-old daughter Yvette Velasco, who was gunned down a week ago by a husband-and-wife terrorist team. “But in the past couple of years she also became restless.

On Thursday afternoon, hundreds of people gathered at in Covina for a funeral service for Yvette Velasco, one of 14 victims who were killed in the San Bernardino mass shooting. It was an important day: The 27-year-old was going to receive a gold badge officially recognizing her as a San Bernardino County health inspector at a holiday work event. She was one of the victims of a shooting at a social service facility in San Bernardino, Calif., Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2015. (Courtesy of George Velasco via AP) On the morning of Dec. 2, Yvette Velasco got dressed up and flat-ironed her hair.

Velasco and 13 others were killed after one of her co-workers, Syed Rizwan Farook, and his wife stormed into a holiday gathering on Dec. 2 and sprayed the crowd with gunfire. In attendance at Forest Lawn Memorial Park were Velasco’s friends, family, and co-workers, as well as California Highway Patrol officers who came in support of Velasco’s father, who is a retired CHP lieutenant. At a hilltop cemetery in Covina, Velasco’s family, friends and co-workers gathered Thursday under an overcast sky to remember her spirit and bid farewell.

One week and a day after the massacre, Velasco’s friends and family gathered Thursday for an outdoor funeral, at a spot on a hill chosen by her three older sisters and parents in remembrance of her love of nature. The ceremony marked the beginning of a grim procession that will be repeated over the next week throughout Southern California as victims of the attack are laid to rest. The only hint they had was the Snaochat message she had sent to her sister Adriana Velasco with a photo of a Starbucks cup with a few words mentioning a holiday party.

You can try and take advantage of whatever you want to take advantage of.” Watt, who leads the NFL with 13 1/2 sacks, had a black cast covering his left hand and wrist on Thursday. Robert Velasco, standing next to his daughter’s casket, faced the crowd seated before the cemetery’s four-story mausoleum and recalled how his daughter’s life paralleled his own career. But both Watt and coach Bill O’Brien said they don’t expect the injury to hamper last year’s Defensive Player of the Year. “People are going to try to make a big deal out of this, but I’ve played with worse than this before, even this season,” Watt said. “This I’m not very worried about. Her three sisters, who held hands as they walked past the casket, said that their youngest sibling dispensed sage advice on fashion, careers and other life decisions.

If you don’t play with pain you’re probably in the wrong sport.” Watt wouldn’t say exactly how he suffered the injury other than it was in practice playing football. Nearby, a woman with a navy-colored lanyard labeled “Department of Public Health” dangling from her purse sobbed and nuzzled her head into the chest of the man next to her.

She started off in vector control, collecting mosquitoes hovering near backyard pools and dirty puddles for disease testing, and eventually became an environmental health specialist, a job that sent her around the county inspecting restaurants. At an outdoor vigil Thursday night in a park in Colton, Pastor Dane Aaker acknowledged the horrors of last week’s attack, but added: “God can take even those things that are tragic and evil and God can use them for good.” Less then a block from the Inland Regional Center, the site of the rampage, hundreds of candles and bouquets filled the sidewalk, with notes praising emergency responders and pledging support for those killed.

The week that followed has brought days of shock and a list of somber preparations they didn’t imagine making for a little sister: arranging the funeral and picking photos of a smiling Velasco at birthdays and weddings for a reception slideshow. At her funeral Thursday, former colleagues recalled a petite Velasco determinedly driving enormous trucks, setting smelly mosquito traps and lifting heavy bags in spite of her small frame.

Her sisters remembered her as the one they went to for advice, even though she was the youngest, because she offered a sound opinion and did not judge.

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