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Leaders ask for prayers after shooting

WASHINGTON: As military, police and federal investigators searched for a second suspect in the September 16 shootings at the Washington Navy Yard that left at least 12 people dead, religious leaders and public officials offered prayers for the victims and their families.

Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl and Archbishop Timothy Broglio, who heads the Washington-based Archdiocese for the Military Services, both offered prayers for the victims and their families.

Law enforcement officers gather at scene of a shooting at the Washington Navy Yard after a gunman opened fire inside the base Sept. 16. (CNS photo/Jason Reed, Reuters)

Horror day: Law enforcement officers gather at the scene of a shooting at the Washington Navy Yard after a gunman opened fire inside the base.
Photo: CNS /Jason Reed, Reuter

Archbishop Broglio said the “terrible loss of life” shocked and saddened him, particularly as it occurred at a familiar place where he has often visited and celebrated the Eucharist.

“Somehow we must restore the notion of respect for life into the fabric of the nation,” he said.

“When the uniqueness of the human person created in the image and likeness of God is universally recognised, the possibility of a mass shooting is more remote.”

Washington’s police chief and mayor and others in law enforcement told reporters for 12 people were dead, including one man believed to be one of perhaps two shooters in the attack that unfolded shortly before 8.30 am in one of several large buildings at the Navy facility.

Law enforcement officers identified the dead shooter as Aaron Alexis, a 34-year-old from Texas.

Late in the afternoon, the search was continuing for a second man thought to have been involved.

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