COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – One victim was a self-described “master of silly business,” a bartender at a nightclub. Another was known for the “heavy hand” that would pour drinks and dispense life advice to friendly patrons.
Family and friends of the victims of the deadly mass shooting at an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colorado, began identifying and mourning the loved ones lost in the tragedy. Authorities on Monday confirmed the names of five people killed by a gunman who opened fire at Club Q just before midnight on Saturday.
During a news conference on Monday, Colorado Springs Police Chief Adrian Vasquez said, “too often we don’t find the victims” and they “don’t get the dignity and respect they deserve.”
“We will demand justice for all the victims and honor the members of the community who have lost their loved ones,” Vasquez said.
Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers also expressed his “heartfelt condolences” during the news conference and pledged “unwavering support to the victims, their families, and the LGBTQ+ family.”
Here’s what we know about the victims:
Daniel Davis Ashton, 28
Aston was identified by his mother in an interview with The Associated Press. Sabrina Aston said her 28-year-old son grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and moved to Colorado Springs two years ago.
Aston, a transgender man, was a well-known bartender and entertainer at Club Q, the site of the massacre. “It’s just a nightmare you can’t wake up from,” said Sabrina Aston.
His mother told a reporter that he had a passion for entertaining at an early age. He attended Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma and became president of the LGBTQ club.
“We’re in shock, we cried a little bit, but then you go through this phase where you just go numb, and I’m sure it will hit us again,” she said. “I think it’s a mistake, they made a mistake, and he’s actually alive.”
‘When will it close?’:LGBTQ community, Pulse survivors react to Club Q shooting in Colorado Springs
Rump was a bartender at Club Q. His Facebook account listed attending Kutztown Area Senior High School in his native Berks County, Pennsylvania.
Anthony Jaramillo, a friend of Rump’s, told CBS News that he was a staple at bars and often visited friends’ homes in Pennsylvania.
Jaramillo was “loving, helpful, with a heavy hand pouring into his drink, and a really good listener and wouldn’t be afraid to tell you what you wanted to hear and that was really valuable.” ,
Rump’s neighbor Aaron Ward heard the news of his death on Monday morning. As Rump often worked late shifts at Club Q, Ward had little interaction with Rump, but remembers him for his kindness.
Ward said, “I was worried because I hadn’t seen his car in two days.” “Someone came over a couple days ago and said they found his phone at the club and they couldn’t find it anywhere… Whenever I talked to him or saw him, he was always very nice, very kind, very respectful. What little was known about him was a great man.
LGBTQ Resources:How Club Cue Helped Victims After the Colorado Springs Shooting
Kelly Loving, 40
Last week, Natalie Bingham celebrated Kelly Loving’s 40th birthday at her Denver home with a small cake and a few close friends. For Bingham, 25 and transgender, celebrating another trans woman’s 40th birthday was a big deal — many of her transgender friends had died young, she said.
Reaching 40 felt like a milestone.
“It gives us hope that we may live for a long time,” Bingham said. “It gave me hope that we can live a long, normal life.”
Loving’s life was dramatically cut short on Saturday. Loving called Bingham via FaceTime as she entered the club excitedly showing off her new outfit and hairstyle minutes before the shooting.
Bingham said Loving moved from Memphis to Denver earlier this year in hopes of finding a community more embracing of her identity. She said that she met Loving through a mutual friend and immediately the two hit it off. Bingham and Loving had made plans to meet for Thanksgiving dinner that week.
“We were going to be friends. We were all going to cook,” Bingham said. “It’s really, really crazy.”
Loving’s sister, Tiffany Loving, expressed her condolences to all those affected by Saturday’s shooting. Tiffany Loving described Kelly as a nice and wonderful person.
“She was loving and caring and sweet. Everyone loved her,” Tiffany Loving said in a statement to USA TODAY on behalf of the family.
Ashley Paugh, according to her husband, Kurt Paugh, was killed in the attack.
“We are completely devastated by the loss of Ashley,” Kurt Pugh wrote in a statement to The Coloradoan, part of the USA Today Network. “She was everything to this family, and we can’t even begin to fathom what it would mean to not have her in our lives.”
Kurt Pugh said Ashley was “a wonderful mother” who is survived by an 11-year-old daughter, Raleigh, a championship swimmer.
Kurt Pugh wrote, “She had a huge heart. I know Ashley cared about so many people.” “She helped so many people through her work at Kids Crossings, a non-profit organization that helps foster children find loving homes.”
Pau’s sister, Stephanie Clarke, also posted a memorial on Facebook.
Clark wrote, “I have lost my sister and I am very sad and very angry right now.” “She was a sister, daughter, mother, wife, aunt, niece and cousin. We are all devastated.”
‘We are all feeling the shock and sadness’:Colorado Springs community mourns Club Q shooting victims
Raymond Green Vance, 22
According to a family statement provided to USA TODAY, Raymond Green Vance, 22, went to Club Q on Saturday night with his girlfriend, Casey Fierro, and her family to celebrate a friend’s birthday.
“Raymond was a kind, selfless young adult who had his whole life ahead of him,” the statement said.
According to Vance’s family, born in Chicago, Vance lived in Colorado Springs his entire life and lived with his mother and younger brother. He was a 2018 graduate of Sand Creek High School and recently got a new job at a FedEx distribution center in town.
Vance’s mother described him as “a popular, well-liked young man who never got into trouble and had lots of friends.” The statement said that although Vance had never been to Club Q before Saturday, he was a supporter of the LGBTQ community and was there to enjoy a show.
According to the statement, “Raymond was the victim of a man who spread terror on innocent people, including family and friends.”
LGBTQ resources and more:How Club Cue Helped Victims After the Colorado Springs Shooting
Contributing: James Bartolo and Tracy Harmon, The Pueblo Chief; Sarah Pugh, The Coloradon