Two bartenders have been confirmed among the five people who were shot dead at an LGBTQ club on Saturday night November 19.
Photos of Daniel Aston and Derrick Rump were posted on Facebook by a colleague at Club Q in Colorado Springs, USA.
Paying tribute to his two colleagues on Sunday (November 20), the Club Q employee said, “My boys are gone. Please (sic) take care of each other. I love you both so much.”
25 people were also injured in the attack, which appeared to be a premeditated attack by a single gunman carrying an AR-15 rifle.
Sole suspect Anderson Lee Aldrich, 22, was arrested in connection with the crime which occurred on the eve of Transgender Remembrance Day at 11:57 p.m. local time.
Aston, 28, was a trans man and the shooting is being investigated as a hate crime.
Police also revealed that Aldrich had been subdued by at least two heroic members of the club’s public.
He is now being held at a local hospital, being treated for unknown injuries.
It emerged that Aldrich was also arrested in June 2021 for a bomb threat but was never formally charged.
Joshua Thurman, 34, told US reporters how he survived the attack after hearing four or five gunshots as he danced.
He said: “I thought it was the music because there was no screaming, no shouting of ‘Help, help’, none of that.
“Then I heard more gunshots and saw the flash from the muzzle of the gun.
“When I realized what was happening, I immediately ran to the dressing room. There was a client following me, and there was a drag performer, Del Lusional, who was in the dressing room.
“I had them lock the doors and we lay down on the floor and immediately turned off the lights. We heard everything. We heard more gunshots. We heard the attacker being beaten by someone who , I guess, dumped him.
“We heard the police come in. We heard them yelling at him. Then we heard ‘Check some people out, because they’re critical.'”
After leaving the locker room, Thurman said he saw bodies on the floor.
On its Facebook page, a statement from Club Q said it was “devastated by the senseless attack on our community” and added that thoughts and prayers were with the victims and their families and friends, while expressing their appreciation for “the quick reactions of the heroic customers who subdued the shooter and put an end to this heinous attack”.