An Iraq War veteran and a woman who was accompanying a friend to the Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs were identified Sunday as the two civilians killed in the shooting there. Garrett Swasey, a policeman at the local University of Colorado branch, was named shortly after the siege ended Friday.
Robert Dear surrendered at the scene and is being held. Officials said Sunday it will take six to seven days to process the crime scene.
John Ah-King told the Denver Post his daughter Jennifer Markovksy, a 36-year-old married mother of two, was accompanying a friend to the clinic when she was killed.
"I couldn't believe it," Ah-King said through sobs from his home in Hawaii. "I just messaged her Thursday to say happy Thanksgiving."
Ah-King said Markovsky, the mother of a young son and daughter, moved to Colorado several years ago. She grew up in Hawaii.
The other person killed at the clinic was Ke’Arre Stewart, 29, an Army veteran and father of two girls. He graduated from La Vega High School in Texas in 2004 and joined the Army, his friend Amburh Butler told the Post. Stewart was stationed at Fort Hood and did one tour in Iraq.
"He moved to Colorado because he was stationed there, but he stayed because he loved it," said longtime friend Eric Cross Sr.
Swasey was a former was a junior national couples ice dancing champion, and skater Nancy Kerrigan remembers him as a loyal, caring and a true friend, the Associated Press reported.
She told media outlets that Garrett Swasey was "one of my best friends" as they grew up together practicing figure skating in Melrose, Massachusetts. Swasey's father has told the Boston Globe his son moved to Colorado in the 1980s to pursue competitive figure skating and became an officer six years ago.
My prayers and love go out to Garrett's entire family. Remembering a wonderful friend and person whom will be greatly missed!
— Nancy Kerrigan (@NancyAKerrigan) November 28, 2015
Swasey's family issued a statement Sunday, the Colorado Springs Gazette reported. It read, in part: "The family of Officer Garrett Swasey sincerely thanks everyone for their support during this very difficult time. Our loss cannot be expressed in words. While the nation now knows Garrett as a hero who gave his life for others, he was also a devoted husband of 17 years and a wonderful father to his two children. His greatest joys were his family, his church, and his profession. We will cherish his memory, especially those times he spent tossing the football to his son and snuggling with his daughter on the couch."
A fund set up for the officer's family has already raised more than $83,000 at press time.