EATON TOWNSHIP, WYOMING COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Wednesday marked the five year anniversary of the Weis Markets murder suicide shooting that left four people dead.
Eyewitness News shares the story of the sole survivor that came eye to eye with the gunman but made it out alive
“Out of the five of us in the store, I was the only one who made it out alive,” said the lone survivor.
Kristin Newell showed up for work at Weis Markets in Eaton Township like any other day. She did not know at the time, her coworker, 24-year-old Randy Stair was about to change her life forever.
“I heard a couple of popping sounds, kind of like balloons. So I turned to where Victoria was in the aisle to ask her if she had heard it. When I turned, I saw Randy at the end of the aisle with his gun and I had saw Victoria on the ground,” Newell recounted.
25-year-old Victoria Brong of Factoryville.
“He just kind of stopped and looked at me. It felt like forever,” recalled the survivor.
She froze standing in aisle 16 face to face with the shooter
“Instead of shooting me, he walked the next aisle over and came around and he shot Terry,” she said
63-year-old Terry Sterling of South Montrose.
“I don’t even know where Brian was in the store but he must’ve heard what was happening,” she recalled.
47-year-old Brian Hayes of Springville.
“At some point, Randy went looking for him.”
Kristan frantically called 911. The operator asked her to hide, but in the midst of a grocery store, she didn’t see any hidding places.
“I ran to the front doors. He had a power jack and a pallet stacked up against the front doors and they were locked,” she explained.
She doesn’t remember how she was able to open the door, but she managed to do it and run.
“One by one the police showed up and they tried to enter the building to see what was going on and you could still hear gunshots going off inside, until it was dead quiet.”
Three lives gone forever.
“Most people say you are alive for a purpose, for a reason. You just have to figure it out. I don’t know my reason and if I could, I would bring back the others because they didn’t deserve to lose their lives that way,” said Newell.
Five years later, is anything different?
“There’s still gun violence, more people are going to be hurt. And it’s not just the people who were there. It’s a ripple effect. It affects not just the one person that was in the building. It affects that person‘s family, friends, community,” she said.
A community that half a decade later is still grappling with what happened on June 8, 2017.
Today (June 8, 2022), we remember Victoria Brong, Brian Hayes and Terry Sterling who were lost in a senseless act of violence in our store five years ago. We remain grateful to people of Tunkhannock and surrounding communities who helped their families and were supportive of our associates during this difficult time.Weis Markets