Salvation Army responds after gunman attacks Sikh temple in Wisconsin

EDS teams on duty in Milwaukee, Wis., and Aurora, Colo.

Salvation Army responders were quickly on the scene Aug. 5 after a gunman killed six people before being shot by police and taking his own life at a Sikh temple in Milwaukee, Wis.

Stan Kelley, local spokesperson for The Salvation Army, said: “The local police received their first call here about 10:30 a.m. The Oak Creek Corps is less than a mile from the Sikh temple, and they were quick to respond. A canteen from the Waukesha Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) team…was at the scene by 11 a.m.”


Photo by Chris Wilson (Aug. 6, [copyright symbol] 2012 Journal Sentinel, Inc., reproduced with permission).

Because there was no clear motive for the shooting the scene was treated as a domestic terrorism incident, with investigators from the several agencies and emergency services converging quickly on the site.

The area was secured by the FBI until shortly after 6 p.m., during which time The Salvation Army provided food, drinks and emotional and spiritual support to responders and survivors.

“We have been able to help many people,” Kelley said. Now the authorities have the situation under control, feeding and hydration will continue as long as needed. The Salvation Army’s EDS team will be able to set up a center for spiritual and emotional care for any who need help.”

Earlier this summer in Aurora, Colo., Salvation Army Lts. Randy and Sheryl Skelton attended vigils for victims of the July 20 theater shooting, praying with their friends and family members. Randy Skelton gave out water and removed garbage. When a woman asked if she could help, he learned that she was a relative of one victim and had traveled from California. The Skeltons prayed with and comforted her. The Army’s EDS teams remained on standby, calling daily to offer support.


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