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Old 03-09-2018, 01:44 PM
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Exclamation Gunman takes 3 hostages at largest US veterans home

Gunman takes 3 hostages at largest US veterans home
By: By ASSOCIATED PRESS - Published: March 9, 2018
RE: https://www.stripes.com/news/us/gunm...-home-1.515940

Live coverage is currently underway. Live video: Veterans Home of California in Yountville, Calif.

YOUNTVILLE, Calif. ó A gunman took at least three people hostage at the largest veterans home in the United States on Friday, leading to a lockdown of the sprawling grounds in California, authorities said.

Authorities said they could not immediately say if anyone was injured. Police evacuated the property of the Veterans Home of California after reports of a man with a gun at the facility in the small town of Yountville in Napa Valley, the heart of Northern California wine country.

"We do have an active shooter situation with a hostage situation in Yountville," California Highway Patrol Officer John Fransen told San Francisco Bay Area news station KTVU-TV.

The Napa Valley Register reported that a man wearing body armor and armed with an automatic weapon entered the home.

Fransen said authorities were working to establish a secure perimeter around the facility, which is home to about 1,000 residents. An armored police vehicle, ambulances and several fire trucks were at the scene.

Events manager Elizabeth Naylor, who was working about 10 miles north of the veterans' home, said she heard waves of emergency sirens. She said she's lived in Yountville since 1995 and is rattled about a shooting so close to home.

"I don't know the world we live in today, I really don't," she said. "This is a little community and we all know each other. Napa Valley is a wonderful, beautiful place and to know this is in your background, it's unsettling."

The Napa County Sheriff's Department issued an alert to residents at 10:30 a.m. warning them to avoid the area. The department did not immediately respond to a telephone call from The Associated Press.

The state Veterans Affairs department says the home that opened in 1984 is the nation's largest veterans home, with about 1,000 elderly and disabled residents. Its website says it offers residential accommodations with recreational, social, and therapeutic activities for independent living.

The grounds also are home to a 1,200-seat theater, a 9-hole golf course, a baseball stadium, bowling lanes, a swimming pool, and a military Base Exchange branch store.

Note: Veterans Home of California - Yountville
posted - 2 hours ago

Law enforcement is at the Yountville Veteranís Home right now following reports of gunfire. The safety of our residents, workers and the community is our top priority.

We have activated our emergency response protocol and are cooperating with law enforcement. Further official information will be provided by law enforcement when it is confirmed.
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O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
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  #2  
Old 03-10-2018, 09:23 AM
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Gunman in California vet center shooting was ex-Army rifleman
By Associated Press March 10, 2018 | 2:45am | Updated
RE: https://nypost.com/2018/03/10/gunman...s-army-career/

YOUNTVILLE, Calif. — Three women who devoted their lives to helping traumatized veterans were killed by a patient who had been kicked out of their Northern California treatment program, authorities and a relative of a victim said.

A daylong siege at The Pathway Home ended Friday evening with the discovery of four bodies, including the gunman. He was identified as Albert Wong, 36, a former Army rifleman who served a year in Afghanistan in 2011-2012.

Investigators were still trying to determine when and why Wong killed two executives and a psychologist at The Pathway Home, a nonprofit post-traumatic stress disorder program at the Veterans Home of California-Yountville in the Napa Valley wine country region.

It was “far too early to say if they were chosen at random” because investigators had not yet determined a motive, California Highway Patrol Assistant Chief Chris Childs said.

Gov. Jerry Brown ordered flags flown at half-staff at the capitol in memory of the victims. They were identified as The Pathway Home Executive Director Christine Loeber, 48; Clinical Director Jennifer Golick, 42; and Jennifer Gonzales, 29, a clinical psychologist with the San Francisco Department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System.

“These brave women were accomplished professionals who dedicated their careers to serving our nation’s veterans, working closely with those in the greatest need of attention after deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan,” The Pathway Home said in a statement.

Golick’s father-in-law, Bob Golick, said in an interview she had recently expelled Wong from the program.

The Pathway Home is located on the sprawling campus of the veterans center, which cares for about 1,000 elderly and disabled vets.

It is the largest veterans home in the nation, according to the state Department of Veterans Affairs.

Wong went to the campus about 53 miles north of San Francisco on Friday morning, slipping into a going-away party for some employees of The Pathway House.

Larry Kamer told The Associated Press that his wife, Devereaux Smith, called him to say that the gunman had entered the room quietly, letting some people leave while taking others hostage.

Golick called her husband, Mark, to say that she had been taken hostage by the former soldier, her father-in-law said.

Mark Golick didn’t hear from her again, Malick said.

A Napa Valley sheriff’s deputy exchanged gunshots with the hostage-taker at about 10:30 a.m. but after that nothing was heard from Wong or his hostages despite daylong efforts to contact him, authorities said.

Army veteran and resident Bob Sloan, 73, was working at the home’s TV station when a co-worker came in and said he had heard four gunshots coming from The Pathway Home. Sloan sent alerts for residents to stay put.

A group of about 80 students who were on the home’s grounds were safely evacuated after being locked down, Napa County Sheriff John Robertson said. The teens from Justin-Siena High School were at a theater rehearsing a play.

“They were a distance away from the shooting situation,” Robertson said.

The bodies of Wong and the women were found at about 6 p.m. While authorities had the building under siege for about eight hours they didn’t enter it.

Wong’s rental car was later found nearby. A bomb-sniffing dog alerted authorities to something on the car but the only thing found was a cellphone, authorities said.

Yvette Bennett, a wound-care supply worker who supplies the veterans center, was turned back when she tried to deliver what she called urgently needed medical supplies for two patients inside.

Of all the medical institutions she has worked with, “this is the most placid, calm, serene place,” she said.

Earlier this week, when she last visited, she asked a doctor, “What’s your magic here?”

“And then 48 hours later this happens,” Bennett said.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Personal note: As tragic as this was - it goes to show more help was needed to prevent this terrible result.

Boats
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O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
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Old 03-10-2018, 09:26 AM
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PTSD treatment center where slayings occurred has helped hundreds of US military veterans
By Bradford Betz | Fox News 3-10-18
RE: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2018/03/10...-veterans.html

The hostage crisis at the veteran’s treatment facility in Northern California -- where an armed suspect killed three women and himself Friday -- hosted a rehabilitation center for U.S. service members transitioning to civilian life.

The Pathway Home opened 10 years ago to treat U.S. soldiers returning from conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Many of the veterans suffer from severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

The facility is a 9,000-acre campus located in Yountville – about an hour's drive north of San Francisco.

Friday's gunman -- whom authorities identified as Albert Wong, 36, of Sacramento -- was recently kicked out of the program, the father-in-law of one of his victims said Friday.

According to California state Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, Wong was asked to leave for unknown reasons. The slain women were staffers who worked with Wong, Dodd said.

Treatments at the Pathway Home have included swimming with dolphins and having veterans work with children. Since 2008, approximately 450 people have been treated there for PTSD and brain-related injuries.

Its website states: “The Pathway Home has helped more than 450 post-9/11 Veterans improve mental health issues, while supporting successful community reintegration and achievement of academic, work-related, and relationship success.”

The Veterans Home of California-Yountville, which occupies space on the campus, accommodates 850 retired service members, some going back to World War II.

The Pathway Home was featured in the non-fiction book and film of the same name, ‘Thank You For Your Service.’
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Boats

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
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Old 03-10-2018, 12:21 PM
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Update: California gunman in veteran center killings was ex-patient
By: Ellen Knickmeyer, The Associated Press and Janie Har, The Associated Press 3-10-18
RE: https://www.navytimes.com/news/2018/...as-ex-patient/

YOUNTVILLE, Calif. — Three women who devoted their lives to helping traumatized veterans were killed by a patient who had been kicked out of their Northern California treatment program, authorities and a relative of a victim said.

A daylong siege at The Pathway Home ended Friday evening with the discovery of four bodies, including the gunman. He was identified as Albert Wong, 36, a former Army rifleman who served a year in Afghanistan in 2011-2012.

Investigators were still trying to determine when and why Wong killed two executives and a psychologist at The Pathway Home, a nonprofit post-traumatic stress disorder program at the Veterans Home of California-Yountville in the Napa Valley wine country region.

It was “far too early to say if they were chosen at random” because investigators had not yet determined a motive, California Highway Patrol Assistant Chief Chris Childs said.

Gov. Jerry Brown ordered flags flown at half-staff at the capitol in memory of the victims. They were identified as The Pathway Home Executive Director Christine Loeber, 48; Clinical Director Jennifer Golick, 42; and Jennifer Gonzales, 29, a clinical psychologist with the San Francisco Department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System.

“These brave women were accomplished professionals who dedicated their careers to serving our nation’s veterans, working closely with those in the greatest need of attention after deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan,” The Pathway Home said in a statement.

Golick’s father-in-law, Bob Golick, said in an interview she had recently expelled Wong from the program.

The Pathway Home is located on the sprawling campus of the veterans center, which cares for about 1,000 elderly and disabled vets.

It is the largest veterans home in the nation, according to the state Department of Veterans Affairs.

Wong went to the campus about 53 miles (85 kilometers) north of San Francisco on Friday morning, slipping into a going-away party for some employees of The Pathway Home.
Larry Kamer told The Associated Press that his wife, Devereaux Smith, called him to say that the gunman had entered the room quietly, letting some people leave while taking others hostage.

Golick called her husband, Mark, to say that she had been taken hostage by the former soldier, her father-in-law said.

Mark Golick didn’t hear from her again.

A Napa Valley sheriff’s deputy exchanged gunshots with the hostage-taker at about 10:30 a.m. but after that nothing was heard from Wong or his hostages despite daylong efforts to contact him, authorities said.

Army veteran and resident Bob Sloan, 73, was working at the home’s TV station when a co-worker came in and said he had heard four gunshots coming from The Pathway Home. Sloan sent alerts for residents to stay put.

A group of about 80 students who were on the home’s grounds were safely evacuated after being locked down, Napa County Sheriff John Robertson said. The teens from Justin-Siena High School were at a theater rehearsing a play.

“They were a distance away from the shooting situation,” Robertson said.

President Donald Trump tweeted Saturday morning: “We are deeply saddened by the tragic situation in Yountville and mourn the loss of three incredible women who cared for our Veterans.”

The bodies of Wong and the women were found at about 6 p.m. While authorities had the building under siege for about eight hours, they didn’t enter it.

Wong’s rental car was later found nearby. A bomb-sniffing dog alerted authorities to something on the car but the only thing found was a cellphone, authorities said.

Yvette Bennett, a wound-care supply worker who supplies the veterans center, was turned back when she tried to deliver what she called urgently needed medical supplies for two patients inside.

Of all the medical institutions she has worked with, “this is the most placid, calm, serene place,” she said.

Earlier this week, when she last visited, she asked a doctor, “What’s your magic here?”

“And then 48 hours later this happens,” Bennett said.
__________________
Boats

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
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