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Texas Woman Loses Friend In Shooting At First Baptist Church


I'm going to turn us now to Michele Nicholson. Michele is a resident of La Vernia. That is less than a 10-minute drive from the church. Michele, are you on the line?


KING: Michele, first of all, thank you so much for joining us.

NICHOLSON: You're welcome.

KING: I understand that a friend of yours was shot at the church this morning. Do I have that right?

NICHOLSON: Yes. In fact, I think it - she was actually shot at the Valero across the street from the church.

KING: What is the Valero?

NICHOLSON: Yeah, they haven't covered anything on the news that I've seen about Valero, but that's where we always go to get sodas or coffee in the morning or whatever. And from my understanding, that's where she was hurt. And her children are also in hospital at the moment.

KING: My God.

NICHOLSON: And I have no idea. I have no idea what their status is at this point.

KING: How did you learn that your friend had been - do I have it right, she's been injured?

NICHOLSON: She's been shot.

KING: She's been shot. And how did how did you hear?

NICHOLSON: My girlfriend called me this morning because that's how our community is. It's like when you see something or hear something, you call your friends and you tell them right away and - yeah.

KING: Can you tell me...


KING: Oh, go ahead, please.

NICHOLSON: That was it. I mean - yeah.

KING: The community you're describing sounds very small. It sounds very tight-knit. Tell me a little bit about Sutherland Springs.

NICHOLSON: It's a very small, small town, and we all know each other. We - I know everybody that works at that gas station. We wave when we go by. Like, we all look out for each other. So, to me, this is like shocking. I can't even imagine like what is going on right now with this. I mean, I'm really like in a state of like - numb at the moment over it.

KING: You absolutely must be. Have you heard anything from officials down there? Has there been any official response, any guidance on what you guys should do next?

NICHOLSON: No, we have not. We went by there earlier at about, I would say, like, 3 o'clock. And the Valero parking lot was covered in police cars. And you couldn't even pull in there if you wanted to. It was so full of just stuff going on and flashing lights and everything. So obviously, the crime scene, we weren't even going to attempt to go in there. But yeah, it's pretty bad. I mean, I think it rocked our community like seriously.

KING: Well, it certainly sounds like it. And, Michele Nicholson, we want to thank you so much for joining with us. I do hope we have a chance to talk to you again soon, get an update on how your friend and her children are doing. Michele Nicholson is a resident of La Vernia, just up the street from Sutherlands Springs. Thanks, Michele.

NICHOLSON: You're welcome. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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