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Community rallies around Chabad synagogue after shooting

A day after a gunman stormed the Chabad of Poway synagogue outside San Diego, killing one woman and injuring three others, offerings of support from the community at large are pouring in. For the latest on the aftermath of the shooting, Steve Walsh, a reporter for San Diego public media station KPBS, joins Hari Sreenivasan.

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  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Reporter Steve Walsh of San Diego Public Media station KPBS joins us now via Skype. Steve you were up there at the scene today. Can you describe it?

  • Steve Walsh:

    Yes, Hari. So as you can imagine there's an intense media interest here. We see a lot of camera crews up there. Also members of that congregation. This is a very tight-knit community. Many of the people that attend this synagogue actually live in the surrounding neighborhood. So we are able to actually talk to one of the people that knew Lori Kay with the 60-year-old who was killed yesterday. As well as one of the congregants who was able to actually pass the gunman and was able to get him to put the gun down. And then force him to leave.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Yeah. So tell me a little bit about what what you heard from them about Miss Kay.

  • Steve Walsh:

    Well according to our friend is she … this was just the sort of thing that she would do as shocking as it was but it wasn't surprising that she would give her life this way.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    You also had a chance to catch up with the mayor today what is what does he have to say?

  • Steve Walsh:

    Well he says that this he wants to stress that this is not what Poway is like that he was in this at this synagogue six months ago after this happened in Pittsburgh that they had designed a safety plan to keep the content if this congregation more safe and make sure that they felt secure and included in this community. So there's. A tremendous amount of shock but then the mayor also wants to stress that this is not what this community is all about. And he's basically been there almost nonstop since it happened yesterday morning at about eleven thirty.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Of the people that you spoke with who live in the neighborhood who are part of this congregation this was supposed to be a celebratory time for them in the year. What are they going through?

  • Steve Walsh:

    Well you know it's it's shock and it's hurt. The fellow I talked. To Oscar Stewart who charge the gunman who was just simply in tears. Twenty four hours later he he doesn't even understand even though he has military training himself he was in the Navy and in the army that he surprised in himself that he decided that last moment to charge the gunman.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Are there any kinds of counseling services that are available to all these people right now?

  • Steve Walsh:

    What you're starting to see that roll in, and again, you're starting to see the faith community in San Diego rallying around these folks you're starting to see people showing up. They say that after this incident happened the Orthodox Church even though they were hearing shots next door were opening up their church to allow people to rush in there and lead to safety. So there is there's a lot of outreach. We've seen several churches give sermons this morning talking about how they don't want to see the Jewish community isolated in San Diego. But yet we also have the FBI we have, the San Diego County Sheriff's Department and all the full array of counseling services available to people in this congregation.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Alright, Steve Walsh of KPBS in San Diego joining us tonight. Thanks so much.

  • Steve Walsh:

    Thanks, Hari.

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