'Wrong place, wrong time': Chesapeake Walmart shooting victim Blake Williams battles for life in hospital
Blake Williams, a college student who is just 23 years old would be the seventh person killed in the mass shooting
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CHESAPEAKE, VIRGINIA: A Walmart employee who nearly survived after being shot during the mass shooting at a Virginia Walmart on Tuesday, November 22 is battling for life in the hospital said, the victim's relative. Blake Williams, 23, is currently clinging to a ventilator but his family is expected to take him off life support, his cousin, Shannon Cheetham, told New York Post.
Irate Manager of Walmart and gunmen Andre Bing, 31, discharged a firearm and shot a total of ten people ranging from 16 - 70. Police have named five of the six people murdered in the senseless massacre. The Chesapeake Police Department identified the fatal victims as 38-year-old Brian Pendleton, 52-year-old Kellie Pyle, 43-year-old Lorenzo Gamble, 70-year-old Randy Belvins, 22-year-old Tyneka Johnson, and 16-year-old boy. Due to his age, his name and photograph were suppressed. Police confirmed suspect Bing died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Surviving victim Williams who takes night classes at Tidewater Community College usually works the day shift. The night of the ill-fated shooting, the 23-year-old had traded his shift with another coworker, Cheetham said. “He never made it home. He wasn’t even supposed to be here. Wrong place, wrong time,” she said. Williams was an accomplished bass player and was studying to obtain his commercial driver’s license. “He was fun. He had a smile that lit up the room,” Cheetham said.
Cheetham explaining the tragic situation said, “I was at work and my aunt called me and I picked up the phone and her voice was cracking and she just hollered. Instantly I knew.” “I couldn’t even move for a good 30 minutes.” “He was fun. He had a smile that lit up the room,” she said. “He was outgoing. He was very humble for someone who had a lot going on. He was down to earth but extremely smart,” she told the source. Investigators have not determined a motive behind the gruesome killing. However, coworkers have described Bing as “hostile” and difficult to work with.
Cheetham said the shooter Bing grew up in the Crestwood neighborhood of Chesapeake and she would see him growing up and later at the store. “I used to see him at Walmart at night. He was nice, he would wave,” she said of the gunman. “You would never have thought somebody like that would do something so extreme. Blake never spoke bad about the job or Andre.” Cheetham also added that she was acquaintances with one of the deceased victims Lorenzo Gamble. The pair had gone out for drinks with some friends and recalled the time and said, “That was a good night for everybody.”