This morning I was late to work, so left without packing a lunch. At 11:30, I decided to run to Fred Meyer to grab some food and take it back to work to eat. I arrived at the store a few minutes later and grabbed the first thing I saw, bought it and walked out the door. It was around 11:45. As I walked out, a woman approached the store quickly and looked anxious.
"Did you hear the gunshot?" she asked the Fred Meyer employee who was collecting shopping carts. "Yeah!" the man said.
Gunshot? I didn't hear anything. I looked around the parking lot. If there was a gunshot, wouldn't there be police?
I looked for anything that looked like it might put the words into context and found nothing. I got in the car and drove south on Martinazzi and back to the office a mile away.
What I didn't know is that right before I exited the store a man walked into a medical lab less than three blocks away and shot his estranged wife to death. He then shot out the windows and then shot himself. It's all unfolded as another terribly tragic story that deserves our prayer.
I had driven from the store in the direction of the lab--almost within sight of it--and did not see anything. It was within minutes of the shooting and no police had yet arrived on the scene.
If I would have looked the other direction I would have seen an injured woman running away towards a Subway that I go to fairly often. She was helped by one of the customers until the ambulance could arrive.
What is so strange about this is that last year, my car was totaled by a careless driver just three blocks from the scene of today's crime. Also last year, I was sitting in traffic three blocks the other direction when a police cruiser, responding to a standoff situation, t-boned a family in a car directly in front of me.
I was more thankful than normal to arrive home tonight.