Ten Killed in San Bernardino Were Environmental Health Specialists

They were all members of SEIU Local 721. Some of its members also were wounded in the gunfire.

The 14 people killed when a husband and wife opened fire at a holiday party in San Bernardino, Calif., included 10 environmental health specialists for San Bernardino County who were members of Service Employees International Union Local 721. Three other members were wounded during the attack that local law enforcement agencies were still investigating Dec. 4.

SEIU President Mary Kay Henry issued a statement in which she said, "Another day, another mass murder of innocent people who were just trying to live their lives and do their jobs. Tonight our union is grieving after the attack at the Inland Regional Center, where SEIU caregivers who serve the disabled and their families work every day. Tonight, we pray for all of the victims and their families, the entire San Bernardino community, and for our nation, that this senseless violence will end. We can honor those who have lost their lives and who will never be the same by uniting to demand that our nation does everything to ensure that no more families have to feel this pain, sadness, and loss ever again."

The union has set up a Local 721 Member and Family Support Fund.

According to a list posted on SEIU's website, the members who died are:

  • Robert Adams, 40, Yucaipa, Environmental Health Specialist I
  • Bennetta Bet-Badal, 46, Rialto, Environmental Health Specialist II
  • Sierra S. Clayborn, 27, Moreno Valley, Environmental Health Specialist I
  • Juan Espinoza, 50, Highland, Environmental Health Specialist II
  • Isaac Amanios Gebreslassie, 60, Fontana, Environmental Health Specialist II
  • Shannon Johnson, 45, Los Angeles, Environmental Health Specialist II
  • Damian L. Meins, 58, Riverside, Environmental Health Specialist II
  • Tin T. Nguyen, 31, Santa Ana, Environmental Health Specialist II
  • Nicholas Thalasinos, 52, Colton, Environmental Health Specialist II
  • Yvette A. Velasco, 27, Fontana, Environmental Health Specialist I

Michael R. Wezel, 37, a Supervising Environmental Health Specialist, also was killed.

Twenty-one people were injured, including:

  • Patrick Baccari, Environmental Health Specialist II
  • Denise Nicole Peraza, Environmental Health Specialist I
  • Julie Y. Swann-Paez, Environmental Health Specialist I

Environmental Inspector Kevin Ortiz also was injured, according to the list.

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