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Local veteran reacts to shooting at Navy Yard in DC

By Jennifer Joas, Reporter, JJoas@wfmz.com
Published On: Sep 16 2013 04:31:11 PM CDT
Updated On: Sep 17 2013 04:41:50 AM CDT

We are confronting yet another mass shooting that has left at least 13 people dead, including a gunman.

We are confronting yet another mass shooting that has left at least 13 people dead, including a gunman.

It happened Monday morning on a military installation in Washington, D.C. About 3,000 people work at the Navy Yard.

The FBI confirmed the dead suspect in the mass shooting to be Aaron Alexis, 34, a military contractor from Texas, but police are still unsure why Alexis allegedly carried out the shootings and if there is another shooter involved.

Witnesses at the Navy Yard complex said they were terrified Monday morning.

"As we were exiting the back door, we noticed him down the hall. He stepped around the corner, we heard shots," said witness Todd Brundidge. "And as he came around the corner, he aimed his gun at us and he fired at least two or three shots, and we ran down the stairs to get out of the building,"

One Naval commander not only heard the gunfire but witnessed a maintenance worker next to him get shot.

"He simply walked up to try to say, 'Hey, there is a shooter in your building. Do you know what is going on?' I am like, 'I do not know what is going on.' Fire alarm went off. We are trying to evacuate everybody. That is when he got shot," said U.S. Navy Commander Tim Jirus.

A lot of questions remain unanswered, police said.

"We have no known motive at this stage. There were people who asked earlier if this was a terrorist event. We do not have any reason to think that at this stage but we are continuing that investigation to try to determine what the motive is," said Mayor Vincent Gray, D-Washington.

Local Navy veterans said they are saddened this happened.

"Oh, it is just awful, 12 people being killed, and I would assume at least some of them were civilian workers. They were not even U.S. military," said U.S. Navy veteran George Hunsicker, who served in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War.

Despite the rise of mass shootings across the country, Hunsicker said he never would have imagined a base would be the target.

"Especially at military bases. I would have never thought that it would come to that," said Hunsicker.

Police believe another gunman may be on the loose, but they have not provided specifics on why they believe others could be tied to the shooting.