Vice President Mike Pence and second lady Karen Pence are traveling to Sutherland Springs, Texas on Wednesday to visit with law enforcement officials and families of those impacted by the deadly mass shooting at a Baptist church on Sunday.
Investigators believe the shooting suspect, Devin Patrick Kelley, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, the sheriff in Sutherland Springs told CBS News.
While in Texas, Pence will receive a briefing with local law enforcement, meet with shooting victims who are recuperating and give remarks at a prayer vigil for victims and their families later Wednesday evening.
Pence had announced he would be visiting the area on Twitter earlier this week, saying he and his wife Karen would meet with “families of the fallen, injured & law enforcement.” He added, “We are with you Texas.”
“Faith is stronger than evil”
“I’m here as Vice President to ensure that the full resources of the federal government are being brought to bear,” Pence said.
Pence implored the American people to keep the shooting victims and their families in their thoughts, saying “prayers make a difference.”
The vice president then thanked those gathered and concluded the brief remarks.
Pence makes remarks outside church
“In just a few moments we will meet with families of the fallen, and put our arms around them,” Pence said. “We’ll assure them that every American has them in their hearts.”
Pence said that federal resources are being allocated to assist in Sutherland Springs’ recovery. He also said that the Air Force is looking into why the suspect was able to obtain a weapon in the first place and that the Department of Defense is now conducting its own review.
“We’re here to express our deepest sympathies, our resolve. But we’re also here to express our admiration for a special community of faith,” Pence said.
Pence arrives at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs
Local law enforcement briefed the vice president upon arrival at at the site of the shooting, the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs. Pence then spoke with some civilians gathered near the church, wrapping his arm around one.
Dozens of FBI officers and Red Cross first responders were also present.
Governor Abbot introduced Pence before his brief remarks regarding the attack.
“He’s a man who knows Texas, who cares about Texas, and he’s here to speak on behalf of the United States,” Abbott said of Pence.
SOURCE: BLAIR GUILD