US & Canada

Aurora shootings: The victims

The authorities have released the names of those killed in Friday's gun attack at a cinema in Aurora, Colorado. The statement, by the coroner of Arapahoe County, Michael Dobersen, said one the victims on the list, Matt McQuinn, was awaiting definitive identification:

  • John Larimer, 27
  • Jessica Ghawi, 24
  • Alex Sullivan, 27
  • Micayla Medek, 23
  • Veronica Moser, 6
  • Jesse Childress, 29
  • Alex Teves, 24
  • Alexander Boik, 18
  • Jonathan Blunk, 26
  • Rebecca Ann Wingo, 32
  • Gordon Cowden, 51
  • Matt McQuinn, 27 (not officially confirmed)

Families and friends have also been releasing details of their loved ones:

John Larimer

US Navy cryptologist John Larimer, 27, had gone to watch The Dark Knight Rises with three other sailors from the Buckley air force base in Aurora, where they served.

Originally from Crystal Lake in Illinois, John Larimer joined the navy in June last year as a cryptologist, and had been stationed at Buckley since October.

In a statement, his family said the navy had informed them of their son's death.

"We send our thoughts and prayers out to the families of the other victims and those still recovering in the hospital. We love you John and we will miss you always," they said.

The navy later issued a statement calling him an "outstanding shipmate".

"A valued member of our navy team, he will be missed by all who knew him. My heart goes out to John's family, friends and loved ones, as well as to all victims of this horrible tragedy," said Cmdr Jeffrey Jakuboski.

Jessica Ghawi

Jessica Ghawi, 24, was an aspiring sports broadcaster and blogger. She narrowly avoided a shooting at a shopping centre in Toronto, Canada, just one month ago.

"I was shown how fragile life was," Jessica Ghawi, who wrote and tweeted as Jessica Redfield, said of the incident on her blog. "I was reminded that we don't know when or where our time on earth will end."

Jessica Ghawi, who had recently moved to Denver from Texas, was working as a sports journalist.

"She was a beautiful soul, a Fan intern, and an aspiring sportscaster," Denver's 104.3 The Fan radio station posted on its Facebook page.

Her last tweets were a conversation with a fellow sportswriter about going to see The Dark Knight Rises. The writer, Jesse Spector, wrote a memorial to Jessica on Friday.

"Jessica Redfield was going to be a sportscaster, and she was going to be a good one," Mr Spector wrote.

A family friend tweeted that after speaking to Jessica's mother, he began a hashtag on Twitter to celebrate memories of her life "Please trend #RIPJessica," he wrote.

Alex Sullivan

The family of restaurant worker Alex Sullivan said he had gone to the midnight screening of the Dark Knight Rises to celebrate his 27th birthday with a large group of friends.

He was due to mark his first wedding anniversary on Sunday.

"Alex was a gentle giant, known and loved by so many," the family said in a statement, adding that he was an avid fan of comic books.

His uncle, Joe Loewenguth, said: "He was a very, very good young man.

"He always had a smile, always made you laugh. He had a little bit of comic in him. Witty, smart. He was loving, had a big heart."

Micayla Medek

News that the 23-year-old Micayla Medek had been shot filtered through to her family via friends who she had been with at the cinema. They called her father, Greg, in the early hours of Friday.

For the next 20 hours, they mounted a campaign to find her.

"They searched and searched and searched and searched for her," Jenny Zakovich, her aunt, told Reuters news agency.

Micayla was a student at a local college and worked at the sandwich chain Subway, according to her Facebook page.

Her sister, Amanda, drove from hospital to hospital with Micayla's photo, desperate to find someone who might have seen her. Her father frantically pleaded for information from authorities who had set up a staging area at a local high school.

Ms Zakovich received a call from her brother, Greg, telling her of that alert. "He was sobbing, 'I lost my Cayla, I lost my Cayla. I want to bring my baby home,'" she recalled. "The unknown," she said, "was just eating him up alive."

Veronica Moser

Six-year-old Veronica Moser is the youngest victim. Only days before the shootings, she was boasting about learning how to swim, her great aunt, Annie Dalton, said.

"She was beautiful and innocent," Ms Dalton told the Denver Post. "She loved to dress up and read, and was doing well at school."

Veronica's mother, Ashley Moser, 25, was in critical condition with gunshot wounds in the throat and abdomen, Ms Dalton said on Saturday.

As Ms Moser drifted in and out of consciousness, Ms Dalton said nobody had the heart to tell her about her daughter's death.

Jesse Childress

Another servicemen from the Buckley airbase to be killed in the shootings, Staff Sgt Jesse Childress, 29, was an air force cyber-systems operator and had just been called up to active duty, a military statement said.

Air Force Capt Andrew Williams described Childress as knowledgeable, experienced and respectful.

"He was always our star," he said, adding that he was athletic and enjoyed playing kickball and volleyball.

Alex Teves

Alex Teves, 24, was killed as he tried to shield his girlfriend from the bullets, his father, Tom Teves, told ABC News

He had just received his master's degree in psychology from the University of Denver last month, a university official said. He was originally said to be from Phoenix, Arizona.

Tom Teves said his son had a "heart of gold".

Another friend who was with the couple, known on Twitter only as Caitlin, survived unharmed. "Alex Teves was one of the best men I ever knew. The world isn't as good a place without him," she tweeted .

Matt McQuinn

Image caption Matt McQuinn (R) and girlfriend Samantha Yowler (L) were both caught up in the shooting

Matt McQuinn, 27, was killed in the cinema shootings, according to family attorney Rob Scott, but the fact has not been confirmed by the Aurora coroner's office.

He was said to have been shot as he dived in front of his girlfriend, Samantha Yowler, and her older brother, Nick, to shield them from the gunfire in the cinema, Mr Scott said.

Samantha Yowler was hit in the knee and is recovering from surgery, while her boyfriend was fatally wounded. His parents were told of his death 20 hours after the shooting.

The couple had only moved to the area last autumn. Both worked at a local branch of the retail chain Target.

Alexander Boik

Eighteen-year-old Alexander Boik died weeks before he was about to start his studies at the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, in the Denver suburb of Lakewood.

Known as AJ, a statement by his family said he was loved by all who knew him and was "dating a beautiful lady" who was with him at the cinema but survived.

"We want to try and focus on the beautiful lives that were ended and not the evil that is responsible," the family said.

A friend, Jordan Crofter, described Boik as someone who "didn't hold anything back. He was just his own person".

"He was a ball of joy. He was never sad or depressed. He wanted everybody to be happy."

Jonathan Blunk

Image caption Jon Blunk (L) protected girlfriend Jansen Young (R) from the gunman

Another victim, Jonathan Blunk, 26, of Aurora, died while saving his girlfriend Jansen Young from the gunman.

She told broadcaster NBC that he flung her to the floor and shielded her from the gunfire.

"I guess I didn't really know he had passed until I started shaking him and saying: 'Jon, Jon, we have to go.'"

Jonathan Blunk served for five years in the US Navy, and was working at a hardware shop.

His friend James Gill told the Associated Press he was as an avid fan of outdoor pursuits, and an advocate of the right to legally own guns.

"Pretty much every weapon the guy in the theatre used he owned," Mr Gill said.

"If he was still alive, he would have said his only regret is he didn't have his sidearm with him and he couldn't do anything to stop him."

Rebecca Wingo

Rebecca Wingo, 32, had started a new job at a mobile medical imaging company only months before the Aurora shootings.

"She had a really bubbly personality," colleague Shannon Dominguez said. "She was a pretty happy person. She never got irritated. She was pretty happy to be here."

American media quoted a message from Rebecca Wingo's father posted on his Facebook page.

"I lost my daughter yesterday to a mad man, my grief right now is inconsolable, I hear she died instantly, without pain, however the pain is unbearable. Lord why, why, why?" Steve Hernandez wrote.

Gordon Cowden

The oldest of the victims at 51, Gordon Cowden was said to be from Aurora, a small-business owner and the father of two teenagers.

His two children were at the cinema with him, but survived the attack. He lived in Aurora but was originally from Texas.

His family released a statement describing him as a "true Texas gentleman that loved life and his family".

"A quick-witted world traveller with a keen sense of humour, he will be remembered for his devotion to his children and for always trying his best to do the right thing, no matter the obstacle."