An exchange student from Pakistan, an art teacher, and three students attending her class were among the 10 people savagely gunned down in Friday’s mass shooting at a Santa Fe High School in Texas.
Sabika Sheikh — who was scheduled to head home to Pakistan next month — was in a State Department-sponsored program to better link the US to the Muslim world, the Pakistani Embassy said on Friday night.
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The manager of the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange & Study (YES) Abroad, which hosted Sheikh, was “devastated” by the girl’s death.
“It is with great sadness in my heart that I need to inform you that one of our YES students, Sabika Sheikh of Pakistan, was killed today in the school shooting in Santa Fe, Texas,” the program manager, Megan Lysaght, wrote.
“Please know that the YES program is devastated by this loss and we will remember Sabika and her families (sic) in our thoughts and prayers.”
The YES program works through the State Department to “promote mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of countries with significant Muslim populations.”
The Pakistan Embassy in Washington wrote that “our thoughts and prayers are with Sabika’s family and friends.”
Art teacher Cynthia Tisdale was in her 60s and married to her husband for close to 40 years. She was described by her niece as “a woman who loved her family so much.”
Tisdale had three children and eight grandchildren, according to KHOU-TV.
Three students were in her class when gunman Dimitrios Pagourtzis barged in and went on his rampage.
Chris Stone, Shana Fisher and Kim Vaughan were all sitting in art class together when they were slaughtered by Pagourtzis, according to family members.
Stone was a sophomore and played football at the school. He actually knew his alleged killer from practicing on the gridiron, his family and fellow students said.
“chris stone was a such a sweet and funny boy and always knew how to make anyone laugh,” a friend wrote on Twitter. “my heart is shattered to hear that he is gone and i pray for all his family and friends going through this.”
Substitute teacher Ann Perkins was remembered by family and friends as an amazing mom and an adored teacher.
“Ann Perkins was a beloved teacher, family friend, & woman,” a student wrote on Twitter. “She enjoyed spending time with her children, grandchildren, & students. She lived an impeccable life filled with traveling, love, family, & a bit of champagne. Rest easy our beautiful nurturing angel.”
Also reported dead were students Angelique Ramirez and Kyle McLeod.
Earlier in the day, Ramirez’s friend Sylvia Prichett posted a plea for help finding Ramirez, but later found out that she had not survived.
“My family and I appreciate all the calls, text and prayers but as you can imagine I just can’t reply to everyone right now. Please keep all the families in your thoughts, and hug your children tightly,” she wrote on Facebook.
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