GETZVILLE, N.Y. (AP) — The security guard at a Buffalo supermarket who was shot and killed while trying to stop the gunman in a racist attack May 14 will be laid to rest Wednesday, as the country grapples with another massacre at a Texas school that killed 19 children and two adults.
The Buffalo Police Department will honor retired officer Aaron Salter with a presentation of honors, according to The Chapel in Getzville, where the funeral service will be held.
Services are also set for Pearl Young, a 77-year-old grandmother, great-grandmother and substitute teacher who was devoted to her church.
Salter, 55, of Lockport, was working as a security guard at the Tops Friendly Market and fired multiple times at the gunman before being shot and killed himself. At least one of Salter’s bullets struck the 18-year-old shooter’s armor-plated vest but didn’t pierce, police said.
Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia has called Salter “a true hero.”
Young taught Sunday school at her church, was a longtime volunteer in its soup kitchen and worked as a substitute teacher in Buffalo Public Schools.
Her brother-in-law, Bishop Glenwood H. Young, of the 2nd Church of God in Christ Western New York Jurisdiction, said she was known for baking cookies and cakes, leading youth groups and doing speaking engagements as a licensed missionary in the denomination.
“That was her goal in life, seemingly, whatever she could do to help someone,” the bishop told The Buffalo News. Services are scheduled at Elim Christian Fellowship in Buffalo.
Salter and Young were among the 10 Black people killed when a white gunman wearing body armor and a helmet-mounted camera targeted shoppers and workers at the store in a predominantly Black neighborhood on a Saturday afternoon. Three others were injured in the attack, which federal authorities are investigating as a hate crime.
The alleged gunman, Payton Gendron, of Conklin, has been charged with murder and is being held without bail.
Authorities in Texas say Salvador Ramos, 18, attacked Robb Elementary School in Uvalde on Tuesday, opening fire with an AR-style rifle. Nineteen students and two teachers were killed.
In Buffalo, a funeral for 62-year-old Geraldine Talley is scheduled for Friday. Ruth Whitfield, 86, will be laid to rest on Saturday. The Rev. Al Sharpton is scheduled to deliver those eulogies.