Pensacola church holds prayer vigil for victims of naval air station shooting

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PENSACOLA, Florida (KETK) – Mourners gathered at a church in Pensacola Saturday to pray for the victims of the naval air station shooting.

Pensacola Mayor Grover Robinson told the crowd, “We’re all questioning why it happened.”

Authorities say an aviation student from Saudi Arabia opened fire in a classroom at the naval air station on Friday, killing three people and injuring eight others, including two deputies.

The attack ended when a deputy killed the gunman.

The mayor praised those who came to pray for those stationed at the air base.

“They are going to leave here and they are going to fight to defend our rights as individuals usually somewhere else across the world, it just so happened on December 6 they had to fight it back here in our backyard.”

“Things happen,” Robinson said. “It’s not because God does not love us or any of that nature. God always says he’ll be with us even through the worst of things.”

“This is such a terrible event,” he said. “We’re all questioning why it happened. We certainly can’t control some of these individuals who wish to do harm. And that’s difficult.”

A national security expert has cautioned against jumping to conclusions about the gunman.

He says just because the shooter was a Saudi national doesn’t mean it was a terrorist attack.

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