Family speaks out about losing three loved ones in Sutherland Springs shooting

Sandy Ward lost her two granddaughters and her daughter-in-law in the Sutherland Springs church shooting.

Families in Sutherland Springs are still trying to make sense of the horrific tragedy that took their loved ones from them on Sunday, when a gunman killed 26 members of the First Baptist Church.

"You realize they're never going to grow up, they're never going to get any older," said Sandy Ward, who lost her two granddaughters and her daughter-in-law.

Ward's 5-year-old granddaughter Brooke and 7-year-old granddaughter Emily, along with their 30-year-old mother Joann Ward, were ripped away from their family as they worshipped in the church they called their second home.

Joann was found shielding her three kids.

"She had thrown her body across the three younger ones," Ward said. "When they found Brooke, [Joann] was holding Brooke in her arms."

Joann's 5-year-old son, Ryland Ward, was shot five times. He's recovering at a local hospital. Joann's fourth child, 9-year-old Rihanna, was also inside the church when the terror unfolded. The suspect shot right at Rihanna, but miraculously, he missed and instead hit her glasses.

Rihanna played dead until the nightmare was over.

"I'm not mad at the man that did this," Ward said. "More than anything, I feel sorry for him. I don't understand how somebody could be that evil and that angry to kill little children."

© 2017 KENS-TV


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