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Harford County residents shocked, try to heal after Thursday's workplace shooting

Second mass workplace shooting in less than a year
Posted: 11:18 PM, Sep 20, 2018
Updated: 2018-09-20 23:18:19-04

The Harford County community is heartbroken. It's trying to cope with another workplace shooting. A church close to where the shooting happened, Cranberry United Methodist Church, opened its doors Thursday so people could pray and be together. 

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"It's real heartbreaking for my community," said Pastor Tiffany Patterson.

Seven shot at The Rite Aid Distribution Center in Perryman.  Four including the shooter dead. Three injured. Rita Gustafson remembers last year’s deadly shooting in Edgewood at Advanced Granite Solutions, not far from Thursday's.

"That was close to my job. so it does hit home.  When they happen you just want to hold your family closer."

All over the area, even through tragedy, this community opens its heart.

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"We wanted to open our doors to anyone who was affected by this shooting to let them know that they have a space here," said Pastor Tiffany Patterson of Cranberry United Methodist Church. 

A space the church opened to those trying to cope with so much loss.  But at its core, the spirit of this town is broken right now.

"We go to work saying goodbye to our families, have a great day, and not coming home," Gustafson told WMAR 2 News.

Residents said they’re not only in shock but can’t accept this kind of violence.

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"It hurts my heart people should able to go to work and do what they have to do and should not have to put up with something like this.  It’s devastating," said Kimberly Mitchell.

Delegate Mary Ann Lisanti represents the area where the shooting happened.  She’s dealt with both shootings in the area and says this can’t go on.

"These kinds of things when they happen are unthinkable and they’re becoming something that’s normal and the sentiment I’ve heard in the community is that we can’t allow this to become normal."C

Cranberry United Methodist will open its door again Friday at 7 p.m. for a prayer vigil.