The pain and despair that shook Florida on Wednesday provoked agonizing memories for residents of Sutherland Springs.
On Sunday morning, less than four months ago, a gunman opened fire on worshipers in church, leaving 26 people dead.
Many are still reeling from the nightmare that shook their small community and didn’t want to go on camera but said that Florida pain hits home.
In Sutherland Springs, there are reminders all around of the tragedy that terrorized a room of worshipers at First Baptist Church. Nearby, 26 crosses pay tribute to the lives lost and hopeful messages hang outside the church where the pain is still raw.
Sherri Pomeroy, wife of Pastor Frank Pomeroy, lost her daughter, 14-year-old Annabelle, in the shooting. Sherri says that the hurt hasn’t diminished.
Florida may be hundreds of miles from Sutherland Springs but many say that they feel the agony that the families in Florida are enduring.
“When I see children getting killed, they remind me of the two girls, the Ryland sisters, that got killed,” David Lyons said. “And then when I see children get killed like [what happened in Florida], I reflect back on that again.”
The healing in Sutherland Springs is far from over. But many in the community say that support and outreach that still comes in makes the pain bearable.