News / USA

Wisconsin Community Mourns Victims of Sikh Temple Shooting

Wisconsin Community Mourns Victims of Sikh Temple Shootingi
|| 0:00:00
X
Kane Farabaugh
August 06, 2012 4:46 PM
Law enforcement officials in the northern U.S. state of Wisconsin continue their investigation into a mass shooting during Sunday services at a Sikh temple in suburban Milwaukee. Six people died in the attack and three more were seriously injured, including the police officer who killed the gunman. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the incident - described by police as an act of domestic terrorism - is a shock to those in the area’s relatively small Sikh community.
Kane Farabaugh
MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin — U.S. authorities have identified the gunman who opened fire during Sunday services at a Sikh temple in suburban Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He has been identified as a former American soldier, Wade Michael Page, a 40-year-old man who served in the U.S. Army for about six years in the 1990s before being dismissed with less than an honorable discharge.

Six people died in the attack and three more were seriously injured. The incident - described by police as an act of domestic terrorism - is a shock to those in the area’s relatively small Sikh community.

As local and federal law enforcement officials combed through evidence at the temple, Milwaukee’s international community gathered in a downtown park to mourn the six people who died in the rampage and three more who remain in critical condition at area hospitals.

For temple member Manpreet Kaur, the candlelight vigil came at a time of continued uncertainty.

“The kids, they were having a class around 10 a.m. at that time. We don’t even know where all those kid[s] are," she said. "Somebody told me that there was a class and we are not sure where and what was happening.”

Kaur heard about the vigil, which was hastily organized on the social media outlet Facebook and came with her husband and daughter to seek comfort.

“I appreciate what they are doing here. It tells me that everyone is not bad," she said. "There is a community and they’re people who support and the first thing that comes into mind is the humanity, and no religion.”

“I don’t know any motive for why this took place, but if it has something to do with the way somebody looks, that’s not the America I was taught that we live in,” said ironworker Randy Bryce who joined the vigil by holding up part of a sign that spelled out “Wisconsin Weeps.” He says the incident was just as shocking to him as it was to those in the Sikh community.

The Sikh Religion

  • Monotheistic, founded in the 15th century in South Asia
  • Fifth-largest organized religion in the world, with as many as 30 million followers
  • There are more than 500,000 Sikhs in the United States
  • Observant Sikhs do not cut their hair
  • The current prime minister of India, Manmohan Singh, is a Sikh
  • Sikhs wear turbans and grow beards, and are often mistaken for Muslims in the West
  • Sikhs have been a target of anti-Muslim violence in the United States since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks
“I can’t think of possibly why somebody would walk into the that temple," Bryce said. "They were celebrating a birth today. And, it’s a place where food is served free to anyone who goes in there. Anyone is welcome. A very peace-loving people. It makes no sense.”

India-born software engineer Deepak Narayan was also trying to make sense of what happened, so soon after a shooting at a theater in Colorado that left 12 people dead, and 70 others injured.

“Milwaukee is a peaceful city, but this can happen anywhere," Narayan said.  "Aurora, Colorado, was a small city, I guess, and it can happen anywhere. And, it just reminds that life is fragile and we just have to live each day to the fullest.”

As law enforcement agents continued to search for clues that could provide insight into how the tragedy unfolded, many Sikhs in southeast Wisconsin were just beginning to deal with the shock of an incident that now puts their relatively small and close-knit community in the media spotlight.

It was earlier reported that the wounded policeman killed the gunman. The police clarified later that the gunman was shot and killed by a second policeman.

You May Like

Israelis Quietly Expand Enclave in Palestinian District of Jerusalem

Estimated 500 settlers, armed or protected by paramilitary police, live in Silwan among 50,000 Palestinians More

Video US, Iran Face Similar Challenges in Syrian Fight Against IS

Both Washington, Tehran back fighters battling Islamic State militants in Iraq -- but in Syria they support opposing sides in country’s civil war More

China Boosts Efforts to Help Afghan, Regional Stability

Observers say China’s increased regional involvement are due to concerns that Afghan instability and the presence of anti-China militants in Pakistani border areas could fuel Xinjiang troubles More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: vanessa from: ohio
August 07, 2012 3:50 AM
i am retired from trumbull correctional inst i was almost held hostage by a white supremacist group when i got the phone call a half and hour after getting home that my cell block set down i knew it was them the inst tried to shield my from it but i knew several of them went to the hole and their security level was raise but what does that do when you are doing time forever and a day i have never seen hate like that before i am black i hope i will never again v

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid