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Three victims of Fort Hood rampage named by family, friends



By Lisa Maria Garza and Eileen O'Grady

(Reuters) - The three people killed in a shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas were all male soldiers in their 30s, friends and family said on Friday, as the military searched for a motive behind the second mass shooting in five years at the massive Army base.

Ivan Lopez, a 34-year-old soldier battling mental illness, is suspected of killing the three and wounding 16 others with a recently purchased pistol before turning the gun on himself at Fort Hood on Wednesday.

Among the victims was Army Sergeant Timothy Owens, 37, a recently married native of Effingham, Illinois, who was shot in the chest at close range, his mother-in-law told the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper.

Sgt. First Class Danny Ferguson, 39, from Florida, had just returned from Afghanistan and died while trying to barricade a door to keep the shooter away, his fiancée and fellow soldier Kristen Haley told Tampa broadcaster WTSP-TV. She was nearby when the shooting started.

"If he wasn't the one standing there holding those doors closed, that shooter would have been able to get through and shoot everyone else," she told WTSP-TV.

The third fatality was Carlos Lazaney, 38, of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, the city's mayor told NBC News on Friday.

The suspected shooter Lopez enlisted in 2008 and had served two tours of duty abroad, including four months in Iraq in 2011, military officials said. He had no direct involvement in combat and had not been wounded.

There was a strong possibility a verbal altercation with another soldier or soldiers preceded the shooting, Lieutenant General Mark Milley told reporters on Thursday, adding there was no indication that he targeted specific people.

The Lopez family, who live in Guayanilla, Puerto Rico, said in a statement that it is "dismayed" by the tragic events.

"This is a very painful situation," the father of Ivan Lopez said in the statement. "I ask for prayers for the affected families."

"My son could not have been in sound mind. He was not that way," he said.

'SOMETHING'S GONE WRONG'

The rampage is the third shooting at a military base in the United States in about six months that, along with a series of shootings in public places, such as schools and malls, has intensified a national debate over gun violence.

It has also raised questions about security at U.S. military installations, such as Fort Hood, home to some 45,000 soldiers and airmen assigned to the 335-square-mile (870-square-km) base, along with thousands of civilian employees.

"Obviously we have a gap. Anytime we lose an individual, something's gone wrong," U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told reporters in Hawaii on Thursday.

Military officials have so far ruled out terrorism as the reason for the attack.

Lopez had been treated for depression and anxiety. He was being evaluated to see if he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, military officials said.

The shooting sent shockwaves through the Central Texas community in Killeen, where the base is located, that is still reeling from a 2009 attack in which a former Army psychiatrist, Major Nidal Hasan, shot dead 13 people and wounded 32 others.

Lopez, originally from Puerto Rico, had recently bought the gun he used, a Smith & Wesson .45-caliber pistol, at Guns Galore, the same store in Killeen where Hasan purchased the weapon he used in his shooting spree.

All of the wounded shooting victims were showing signs of improvement, Scott & White Memorial Hospital in Temple said.

"The three patients previously listed in critical condition have been upgraded to fair condition and are expected to remain in the hospital for the next several days," it said in a statement on Friday.

Five patients have been discharged, with one patient staying on through Friday for tests.

(Additional reporting by Chris Francescani and Victoria Cavaliere in New York and Ana Martinez in Guayanilla, Puerto Rico; Writing by Jon Herskovitz)

Join the discussion

1000|Char. 1000  Char.
princessbec April 04 2014 at 9:48 PM

my heart goes out to the families. god will see them through this horrible tradegy. prayers go out to the families.

Flag Reply +4 rate up
teamdoctors April 05 2014 at 12:01 AM

They say he was being treated for depression. The most common anti-depressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors have these side effects

• attempts to commit suicide
• acting on dangerous impulses
• acting aggressive or violent
• thoughts about suicide or dying
• new or worse depression
• new or worse anxiety or panic
attacks

So many dismiss the FACT that these drugs alter the minds of those who take them and the side effect of acting on dangerous impulses and acting aggressive or violent are clearly stated in the side effects. I would rather see doctors run a course of natural treatments such as diet to reduce inflammation which is the strongest biochemical link to depression that can be improved without the use of drugs. There are 2400 scientific references that link inflammation and depression which I have read

I took all the most effective natural approaches for depression known to science and did 4 lectures approved for post graduate medical conferences in Malaysia, Thailand, Australia and the United States. Here is the link to the lecture in Melbourne Australia with all of the references for your review.

Please try a course of diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods, reduced pro-inflammatory foods, exercise and supplements recommended in these lectures first before taking a risk on these drugs which are known to stimulate aggressive and dangerous behavior

Dr James Stoxen DC
Lecture Video and Power Point Notes for The Inflammation-Depression Connection, Melbourne, Australia, August 19, 2012 - See more at: http://teamdoctorsblog.com/2013/02/lecture-video-and-power-point-notes-for-new-approaches-to-disconnecting-the-inflammation-depression-connection-melbourne-australia-august-19-2012/#sthash.nILpS1KB.dpuf

Aches, Pains, Allergies, Fatigue, Brain Fog, Diseases of Aging Have One Common Thread… INFLAMMATION - See more at: http://teamdoctorsblog.com/2012/03/video-tutorial-37-aches-pains-allergies-fatigue-brain-fog-diseases-of-aging-have-one-common-thread-inflammation/#sthash.6Q3qVqAx.dpuf

The Inflammation-Depression Connection Approach and The Science Based Natural Approach to Depression - See more at: http://teamdoctorsblog.com/2012/09/stand-in-my-shoes-the-empathy-deficit-in-the-treatment-of-depressed-patients-and-the-inflammation-depression-connection-approach/#sthash.JwBX1z3j.dpuf

Flag Reply +3 rate up
2 replies
higgins0318 teamdoctors April 05 2014 at 12:12 AM

All of those side effects that you mentioned are also related to Ambien.

attempts to commit suicide
• acting on dangerous impulses
• acting aggressive or violent
• thoughts about suicide or dying
• new or worse depression
• new or worse anxiety or panic
attacks

Flag Reply +3 rate up
Pearltrans teamdoctors April 05 2014 at 1:30 AM

No one has said so far that he was given any medication except Ambien.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
naomizane April 04 2014 at 11:57 PM

This the possible side-effects of one of the medications he was taking for insomnia : "Ambien"
Depression
Confusion
Double Vision
Problems with Eyesight
Abnormal Dreams
Dry Mouth
Indigestion
Incomplete or Infrequent Bowel Movements
Urinary Tract Infection
Joint Pain
Muscle Pain
Drowsiness
Loss of Memory
Sensation of Spinning or Whirling
Dizziness
Head Pain
Feel Like Throwing Up
Throwing Up
Diarrhea
Stomach Cramps
Sluggishness
Feeling Weak
Not Feeling Well
Abnormally Low Blood Pressure
Lung Failure causing Loss of Breath
Lower Respiratory Tract Infection
Hallucinations
Rash
Life Threatening Allergic Reaction
Giant Hives
Reaction due to an Allergy
Falling
Feeling Restless
Extreme Sense of Well Being
Aggressive Behavior
Perform Complex Natural behaviors while Asleep
Acute Infection of the Nose, Throat or Sinus
Hangover
Cannot Focus Thoughts
Chronic Trouble Sleeping
Low Energy
Uncoordinated
Loss of Appetite
Heart Throbbing or Pounding
Nervous
Easily Angered or Annoyed
Anxious
Loss of One's Own Sense of Reality or Identity

Flag Reply +3 rate up
2 replies
higgins0318 naomizane April 05 2014 at 12:11 AM

Yes, and suicide tendencies and paranoia are also side effects of Ambien.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
garyceres naomizane April 05 2014 at 9:41 AM

Thank you FDA!

Flag Reply 0 rate up
jajcoa April 04 2014 at 5:50 PM

My heart goes out to all... the families and this is a very real problem with our troops coming back from a war that has some of us whit the question (is it necessary to have this war?) What is happening to all that come back they have a hard time getting the treatment some desperately need. Is not normal to see so many get kill, die in front of you, Is a mental illness and at times they come back and don't know how to deal with everything, simple life here at home and everyday life not in combat any more . I have a Marine at home and at times I see him struggle and his actively seeking help from the Vets. I feel for all that go through all of this situation never easy.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
trisanna April 04 2014 at 11:49 PM

Terrible situation!! My prayers are going out to the survivors.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
Phyllis April 04 2014 at 5:59 PM

God bless there families and heal the wounded, and thank the brave soldier for giving his life for his countrymen as he had already been doing, so brave.

Flag Reply +4 rate up
bobstave April 04 2014 at 11:46 PM

PLEASE DO NOT JUMP TO CONCLUSIONS REGARDING PTSD OR TROOPS WHO ARE HAVING PROBLEMS NOT EVERY INCIDENT CAN BE EXPLAINED AWAY BY PTSD...WE STILL DO NOT KNOW ENOUGH ABOUT HOW AN INDIVIDUAL WILL REACT TO THE SIMPTOMS......IT TOOK YEARS TO EVEN GET A HANDLE ON COMBAT RELATED PROBLEMS. DON'T MAKE PTSD A CATCH ALL FOR WHAT AN INDIVIDUAL DOES TO HARM HIM/HER SELF OR OTHERS. HAVING BEEN IN MORE THEN ONE GUN FIGHT IN MY TIME (WARS), IT TAKES YEARS TO BEABLE TO DEAL WITH THE AFTERMATH......I WOULD SAY THERE IS A PROBLEM IN THE COMAND STRUCTURE AT FT HOOD....THINK OF IT THIS WAY, FT HOOD IS THE LARGEST ARMY BASE THAT HOUSES MORE COMBAT VETS THEN ANY OTHER PLACE IN THE STATES OR THE WORLD. SO THERE YOU HAVE IT...DOD PUTS SO MANY WAR WERRY VETS IN ONE PLACE AND DAA...THERE'S GOING TO BE PROBLEMS. THE SAME IS NOT TRUE FOR FT BENNING OR FT BRAGG...IS IT?...BOB STAVE USA (RET)....RANGERS FIRST...."IF YOU CARE ENOUGH TO SEND THE VERY BEST" AND HAPPY TRAILS.....

Flag Reply +1 rate up
semperfi7x April 04 2014 at 9:19 PM

"Evaluated"???? So, a month ago a psychiatrist prescribes Ambien. That's not therapy. That's the military and V.A. equivalent of "Have a pill and call me in a month."

If I recall, the American Psychiatric Association finds that prescribed meds COMBINED with talk or a counseling regimen is the best treatment approach.

When will some journalist confront the Army's version of "...treatment...?"

For years we've heard about the V.A. dispensing pills like candy as a substitute for consistent, sound evidence-based treatment. It appears that the same sub-standard approach to Active-duty troops is as poor as the V.A.'s approach.

Terrible waste of life. One can't help but feel Soldiers, Sailors and Marines are completely under-served by a mental health system that fails them time and time again.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
1 reply
Patty and Don semperfi7x April 04 2014 at 9:29 PM

Well stated!

Flag Reply +1 rate up
Carolyn April 04 2014 at 9:25 PM

It seems that in the heat of the moment, people actually lose all rational thinking about what's coming next, or the bigger picture and repercussions to their actions.

Whether it's road rage or parental physical anger or spousal abuse, the angry person just seems to let lose to all those around them, no matter who they are. They are absolutely driven to make things right or what they think is right.

According to this guy's psychiatrist, his family and friends, he was not a harm to anyone, including himself. Aren't there times when we, all, have gone off the deep end to make things right, or what we think is / should be right - ???

But know that I do recognize that 'normally' others suffer terribly in this type of situation. . . . . .

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1 reply
kcarthey Carolyn April 04 2014 at 10:59 PM

Amazing how much or should I say how well you just described sexual agression. Brilliant post on your part

Flag Reply 0 rate up
tzulu11953 April 04 2014 at 6:49 PM

Lets have some more prescription drugs to help the mental people stop killing the good people. Oh yeah that's what we need more chemical doctors to fix this. And when everyone is hooked on the fix it all doctor drugs, for the mentally disturbed homicidal retards we will all live in peace. No more drug store crimes right. No more nut jobs looking for a fix, No more innocent people killed because we are all un armed and addicted like mice in a lab. Load up America the nuts are out of drugs and coming to preach and kill for the cause of mental illness.

Flag Reply +4 rate up
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