September 30, 2016 3:45 a.m.
Most people thought an event like it would never happen in Douglas County.
Saturday is the one year anniversary of Oregon’s deadliest mass shooting, which took place on the campus of Umpqua Community College, north of Roseburg. Nine people, eight students and one instructor, lost their lives at the hands of a fellow student in the mid-morning hours of the fourth day of fall term.
911 operators received the first report of a shooting at 10:38 a.m. Initial reports indicated the event was happening in the Science Building, but it was nearby Snyder Hall where the tragedy took place. Law enforcement and emergency medical personnel sped to the campus even as the gunfire continued.
Within eight minutes Detective Sergeant Joe Kaney and Detective Todd Spingath of the Roseburg Police Department exchanged gunfire with the shooter, in a hallway outside of a classroom. The shooter was said to be “down” a short time later.
With emergency responders still busy at the crime scene, students and staff were bused from the campus a short time later. They were taken to the Douglas County Fairgrounds to be picked up by family and friends.
While the community was in shock, a candlelight vigil was hastily organized and held that night at Stewart Park in Roseburg. Around 2,000 people came out for a quiet low key event following what was one of the toughest days ever in the history of the city.
Oregon Governor Kate Brown addressed the people of Roseburg while Roseburg City Manager Lance Colley called on the community to unify. Several other local leaders spoke as well.
The next morning Douglas County residents awoke to a frenzy of national and international media coverage. Satellite trucks filled the area around the Public Safety Center in Roseburg, and along Highway 99 just west of the college campus, which was closed as the investigation into the shooting continued.
As more information started to come out regarding the tragedy, Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin made it clear he wanted the focus of people’s attention to be on the victims and not the man who had committed the horrific criminal act. Hanlin told reporters he would never utter the name of the shooter.
A year later those who died in the shooting are being remembered throughout the community and far beyond. They are:
*Lucero Alcaraz, age 19, of Roseburg
*Quinn Cooper, age 18, of Roseburg
*Kim Dietz of Roseburg, age 59.
*Lucas Eibel, age 18 of Roseburg.
*Jason Johnson of Winston, age 33.
*Sarena Dawn Moore of Myrtle Creek, age 44.
*Treven Anspach, age 20, of Sutherlin.
*Rebecka Ann Carnes, age 18, of Myrtle Creek
*Instructor Lawrence Levine of Glide, age 67.
Eight people were injured in the shooting. Some of those victims required lengthy hospital stays and continue to deal with significant injuries.
Umpqua Community College was closed for ten days before classes resumed. High school sporting events scheduled for the day after the tragedy were cancelled as well. Counselors steamed into the community to offer support to those hurting.
A week after the shooting, President Barack Obama came to Roseburg. While criticized by many for his remarks regarding gun control only hours after the shooting, Obama held no public event and met only with the families of the victims, at Roseburg High School.
Jumping ahead to Friday and this weekend: Douglas County residents will remember the anniversary of the events at UCC in a variety of ways which you are hearing and reading about. An article on the college’s website encourages students and staff to commemorate the day with random acts of kindness. From paying it forward, to planting a tree, to thanking a veteran, a number of ideas are offered.
Remembering October 1st, 2015 and staying UCC Strong.