National Catholic Reporter

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Killings at Jewish community center mourned; Catholic woman among dead

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Overland Park, Kan.

Outpourings of grief and support came in response to the murder of three people at two Jewish-run facilities in the Kansas City suburb of Overland Park on Sunday, the day before the Jewish feast of Passover was to begin.

Although none of the three dead were Jewish, local police and the FBI labeled the killings a hate crime the day after the shootings. A former Ku Klux Klan leader with a history of anti-Semitism was charged in connection with the killings.

One of the dead was a Catholic woman, Terri LaManno of Kansas City. She was at Village Shalom, where Frazier Glenn Cross, according to police, headed after allegedly shooting a doctor and his teenage grandson at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City a mile away.

LaManno was a member of St. Peter Parish in Kansas City. Her identity was released midmorning Monday. Her mother lives at Village Shalom, an assisted living residence near the community center.

The married mother of two college-age children, LaManno, 53, worked an occupational therapist at the Children's Center for the Visually Impaired, according to The Kansas City Star.

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The newspaper reported that a rosary was said for LaManno after Mass on Monday.

"I express my deepest condolences to the Jewish community for the unspeakable act of violence that occurred on their campus on Sunday," said Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City in a statement Sunday.

"Our prayers also extend to the Methodist Church of the Resurrection for the loss they feel as a congregation, and to all the families who have experienced pain, sorrow and loss because of this event," Naumann added. The other two victims, Dr. William Lewis Corporon, 69, and 14-year-old Reat Griffin Underwood, were members of that congregation.

"I will remember all of you as we enter this prayerful time of remembrance -- Holy Week and Passover," Naumann said.

The American Jewish Committee lamented the killings in a statement Sunday.

"Our hearts go out to the victims of this heartbreaking tragedy," said AJC executive director David Harris.

"As we await more details on the attack and its motive, we join in solidarity with the entire Kansas City area community, both Jewish and non-Jewish, in expressing shock, sadness and dismay," Harris added. "We can't help but note that this attack comes on the eve of Passover, a celebration of Jewish freedom from oppression and violence."

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Washington-based Muslim advocacy group, said U.S. Muslims "stood in solidarity" with American Jews in the wake of the attacks, which also critically wounded a 15-year-old boy.

President Barack Obama said in a statement Sunday, "While we do not know all of the details surrounding today's shooting, the initial reports are heartbreaking."

Underwood had been driven by his grandfather to the Jewish Community Center so he could audition for an "American Idol"-style competition called KC SuperStar.

Cross, 73, who has also used the name Frazier Glenn Miller, or simply Glenn Miller, was caught by a television camera shouting "Heil Hitler!" inside a police car after his arrest.

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