GENEVA, Ala. — A mother and her toddler gunned down in last week's mass shootings in Alabama were buried together Sunday, the girl in her mother's arms, as hundreds of mourners struggled to understand why they were killed by a local man who took his own life.
The Rev. Mike Clarensau told more than 400 mourners that 19-month-old Corrine Gracy Myers is with the angels, and probably teaching them lyrics to her favorite children's tune, Skinnamarink.
Clarensau asked people to pray for the child and her mother, 31-year-old Andrea Myers, and the eight others slain by Michael McLendon during a 24-mile shooting spree.
Andrea and Corrine Myers were the wife and daughter of Geneva County Sheriff's Deputy Joshua Myers, who joined in the pursuit of McLendon before learning that his family members were among the victims.
Mourners tearfully listened to the girl's favorite song, which always made her dance and smile, Clarensau said.
The Myerses' other daughter, 3-month old Ella, was injured by shrapnel but survived. The couple's 4-year-old son, Issak, was not injured.
Andrea Myers and her daughter were buried in a white casket surrounded by flowers.
Authorities said McLendon, 28, was apparently depressed over his failures in life.
Church services return
MARYVILLE, Ill. — The church whose senior pastor was gunned down during his sermon resumed services Sunday with support from a guest preacher whose church in Texas also was bloodied by a gunman's rampage.
The Rev. Al Meredith of Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth opened his sermon to roughly 200 people at First Baptist Church saying, "I'm so sorry it's just me," as he choked back tears.
Police said the Rev. Fred Winters was shot through the heart on March 8 by Terry Sedlacek.
Meredith, 62, spoke about a shooting at Wedgwood Baptist, where a man opened fire on Sept. 15, 1999, killing seven people and wounding seven others.