Amish bury fifth shooting victim
GEORGETOWN, Pa. (AP) — Under a cold, steady drizzle, the Amish drove in horse and buggy to a farmland cemetery Friday to bury the fifth of five girls shot dead by an intruder as new details emerged of heroism inside their schoolhouse.
Two of the survivors of the shooting told their parents 13-year-old Marian Fisher, one of the slain girls, asked to be shot first, apparently hoping the younger girls would be let go, said Leroy Zook, an Amish dairy farmer.
“Shoot me and leave the other ones loose,” Marian has been quoted saying, Zook reported.
Hisdaughter,EmmaMaeZook,wastheteacher who ran from the schoolhouse to a farm to summon police.
Amish builder David Lapp said Marian’s younger sister Barbie, who is recovering from gunshot wounds, provided one of the accounts. “Her sister remembers it, Barbie,” Lapp said. Trooper Linette Quinn said investigators have not conducted any interview that confirms the story but also said the investigation is incomplete.
Parents of two of the surviving victims have also told Leroy Zook the children questioned Charles Carl Roberts after the adults left.
“They just asked him why he’s doing this. He said he’s angry with God,” Zook said.
On Friday, more than 40 buggies splashed along country roads behind a funeral-home car, two mounted state troopers and a carriage with the body of 12-year-old Anna Mae Stoltzfus in a hand-sawn wooden coffin.
Four other girls killed during Monday’s shootings, two of them sisters, were laid to rest Thursday at the same hilltop graveyard.
All roads into Nickel Mines village were again blocked and the funeral procession, like those Thursday, passed the home of Roberts, the 32year-old milk truck driver who took the 10 girls, ages six to 13, hostage, tied them up and shot them before killing himself.
One of the surviving girls was reported to be in grave condition. The county coroner said he had been told she was being taken off life support but her location was not known Friday. The four other girls remain in hospital.
Funerals for Fisher, 13, Naomi Rose Ebersol, seven, and sisters Mary Liz Miller, eight, and Lena Miller, seven, were held Thursday.
New details also emerged Friday about scene outside the schoolhouse.
Lapp, the builder, said he was told there was a gunman at the school and arrived before police, stopping a few hundred metres from the school.
“It was a feeling of helplessness,” Lapp said.
He saw all the boys in the school escape through a side door, jump a fence and then huddle together in a meadow. Lapp watched police storm the building and heard the gunfire.
“We just started shaking. There were a couple of us by then,” he said.
There were about 15 the school.
“They’re still in shock . . . They have this glazed look in their eyes,” woodworker Daniel Esh, whose three grandnephews were in the school, said earlier this week.
The funeral procession of Anna Mae Stoltzfus makes its way through the town of Nickel Mines, Penn., on Friday