Amish bury fifth shoot­ing vic­tim

Saskatoon StarPhoenix - - World -

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.

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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.

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—Getty Images Photo

The fu­neral pro­ces­sion of Anna Mae Stoltz­fus makes its way through the town of Nickel Mines, Penn., on Fri­day

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