ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

clear-night
50°
Sunny
H 64° L 39°
  • clear-night
    50°
    Current Conditions
    Sunny. H 64° L 39°
  • clear-day
    64°
    Today
    Sunny. H 64° L 39°
  • clear-day
    68°
    Tomorrow
    Sunny. H 68° L 42°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb news on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

National
Pittsburgh synagogue shooting victims were grandparents, brothers, devout Jews
Close

Pittsburgh synagogue shooting victims were grandparents, brothers, devout Jews

Victims of the Pittsburgh Synagogue Mass Shooting

Pittsburgh synagogue shooting victims were grandparents, brothers, devout Jews

The victims in the shooting massacre at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh Saturday morning were grandparents, brothers and parents.

The 11 members of the congregation were identified Sunday by the Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office, according to WPXI-TV

>> Read more trending news 

The victims are:

Joyce Fienberg, 75

Richard Gottfried, 65

Rose Mallinger, 97

Jerry Rabinowitz, 66

Cecil Rosenthal, 59

David Rosenthal, 54

Bernice Simon, 84

Sylvan Simon, 87

Daniel Stein, 71

Melvin Wax, 88

Irving Younger, 69

Matt Rourke/AP
People hold candles as they gather for a vigil in the aftermath of a deadly shooting at the Tree of Life Congregation, in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Close

Pittsburgh synagogue shooting: 11 victims identified

Photo Credit: Matt Rourke/AP
People hold candles as they gather for a vigil in the aftermath of a deadly shooting at the Tree of Life Congregation, in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

The victims died when alleged gunman Robert Bowers, 46, opened fire inside the synagogue. Bowers is accused of injuring six other people, including four police officers. Authorities said the suspect, who was armed with a rifle and three handguns, surrendered after a firefight with police. He was shot multiple times but survived. 

Related: Photos: Thousands attend vigil after deadly shooting at Pittsburgh synagogue

Bowers is charged with 11 counts of criminal homicide, six counts of criminal attempted homicide, six counts of aggravated assault and 13 counts of ethnic intimidation.

Related: Family fears relative victim of Pittsburgh synagogue shooting

WPXI reported that a GoFundMe page has been set up to help victims and those affected by the shooting. 

“All funds raised will directly go to the Tree of Life Congregation from GoFundMe, and there is no third party intermediary,” Shay Khatiri, who started the fundraiser, said. More than $300,000 has been raised toward the $1 million goal.

Here’s what we know about the victims:

Daniel Stein

  

Daniel Stein, 71, of Squirrel Hill, was a kind man, according to his nephew, who spoke to WPXI's Rick Earle on Saturday.

Stein, who was retired and lived with his wife, went to Saturday's service at Tree of Life Synagogue alone.

“He was a great guy. He went down to Florida with me last month to pack up some stuff. He was a fun guy. He had a dry sense of humor and everybody loved him. There wasn't one person that didn't like him in the community,” Steven Halle, Stein’s nephew, said.

Jerry Rabinowitz

 

Rabinowitz, 66, served as the personal physician for former Allegheny County Deputy District Attorney Law Claus for 30 years. Claus issued a statement late Sunday morning.

“Dr. Jerry Rabinowitz was more than just a physician for me and my family,” Claus said in a statement late Sunday morning. “For over three decades he was truly a trusted confidant and healer who could always be counted upon to provide sage advice whenever he was consulted on medical matters, usually providing that advice with a touch of genuine humor. He had a truly uplifting demeanor, and as a practicing physician he was among the very best.”

He was also the personal doctor of Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reporter Ben Schmitt and his father.

“Kind and funny, Dr. Rabinowitz completely personified the term ‘bedside manner,’” Schmitt said.

Dr. Rabinowitz practiced family medicine in Pittsburgh, Schmitt said. 

Brothers Cecil Rosenthal and David Rosenthal

 

ACHIEVA, an organization that supports people with disabilities released the following statement about the death of brothers Cecil and David Rosenthal:

“The ACHIEVA family is devastated at the loss of two well-respected members of our community. Two extraordinary men, brothers Cecil and David Rosenthal, 59 and 54 respectively,were victims of the tragedy at the Tree of Life Synagogue. 

“Cecil and David had a love for life and for those around them. As long-standing recipients of ACHIEVA’s residential and employment services, they were as much a part of the ACHIEVA family as they were their beloved neighborhood of Squirrel Hill.

“They loved life. They loved their community. They spent a lot of time at the Tree of Life, never missing a Saturday.”

 

“If they were here they would tell you that is where they were supposed to be,” ACHIEVA’s Chris Schopf said.

“Cecil’s laugh was infectious. David was so kind and had such a gentle spirit. Together, they looked out for one another. They were inseparable. Most of all, they were kind, good people with a strong faith and respect for everyone around,” Schopf said.

Melvin Wax

Courtesy of Barry Werber via AP
This undated photo provided by Barry Werber shows Melvin Wax. Wax was killed when a gunman opened fire at a Pittsburgh synagogue on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.
Close

Pittsburgh synagogue shooting victims were grandparents, brothers, devout Jews

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Barry Werber via AP
This undated photo provided by Barry Werber shows Melvin Wax. Wax was killed when a gunman opened fire at a Pittsburgh synagogue on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.

Wax, 88, a retired accountant, was a member of the New Light Congregation, which rented space in the lower level of the Tree of Life synagogue, The Associated Press reported. 

“He was such a kind, kind person,” Myron Snider, chairman of the congregation's cemetery committee, told the AP.

Wax was a kind man and a pillar of the congregation, filling just about every role except cantor, Snider said.

He was also a lifelong Pirates fan, The New York Times reported, despite the team’s World Series drought . They haven’t won a the series since 1979 and have been mediocre at best for most of the past 25 years.

Joyce Fienberg

 

Fienberg, 75, was a retired researcher, according to The Associated Press. She worked at the University of Pittsburgh’s Learning Research and Development Center. She prayed at the Tree of Life synagogue every day after her husband’s death, according to The New York Times.

“Joyce was a magnificent, generous, caring, and profoundly thoughtful human being,” Feinberg’s friend and decades-long research partner, Dr. Gaea Leinhardt, said.

Richard Gottfried

 

Gottfried, 65, was a dentist and business partner with his wife, Dr. Peg Durachko. Both are University of Pittsburgh alumni. Along with his Catholic wife, Gottfried volunteered for Catholic Charities Free Dental Clinic and helped prepare couples for marriage at St. Athanasius Church. According to the clinic's website he enjoyed playing golf, reading and had completed the City of Pittsburgh Great Race 28 times.

Bernice and Sylvan Simon

Sylvan and Bernice Simon

Posted by WPXI Jennifer Tomazic on Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Bernice, 84, and her husband, Sylvan, 87, lived together in Wilkinsburg, WPXI reported.

“Our hearts are broken,” said Pam Glaser, who lived next door to the couple for decades. “They were so likable and cared about other people."

She said the Simons, who were married 62 years, were both getting a bit frail and recently struggling with health issues.

Rose Mallinger

 

Rose Mallinger, 97, was the oldest victim of the shooting, WPXI reported. She lived in Squirrel Hill.

“It’s hard to talk about Rose without crying,” said Mickie Diamond, whose husband, Chuck, once served as Rabbi at Tree of Life synagogue. Diamond said Rose never missed a Saturday.

She used to attend services with her sister, Sylvia, and when Sylvia passed away, Rose's daughter, Andrea Wedner, starting taking her.

"Andrea would sit next to her mom; I mean, for years this was their routine,” Diamond said. “The thought of her and this violent action, it’s just ... inconceivable.”

Mother and daughter were in their usual spot when both were shot Saturday. Andrea is still hospitalized but expected to survive. 

Irving Younger

Younger, 69, was a realtor who lived in Mt. Washington, WPXI reported.

He was a greeter at the synagogue and had been attending for the past 10 years.

He was also a longtime realtor in Squirrel Hill who was very active in community functions.

A neighbor, who asked not to be identified, shared the following about him:

"Very caring neighbor, he always looked out all the time for his neighbors. He loved Halloween. He always used to come out and give out candy at trick-or-treat. He was a kind soul."

Read More

News

  • A priest in Montreal was stabbed in the chest Friday morning during a morning service that was also televised live, CBC reported. Father Claude Grou was celebrating Mass at Saint Joseph’s Oratory when a man walked to the front of the church and attacked him, CTV reported. The attack was captured on television and during a live stream of the service. Grou was taken to a hospital and later released. He told CTV he did not know who the assailant was and was feeling “fine” as he left the hospital. “There are so many people who helped me to pass through this moment, and now, my health is fine,” Grou told the network. The 26-year-old suspect was quickly wrestled to the ground by security guards after the attack, CBC reported. “I thought he was going to kneel to say a prayer in front of the Saint Joseph’s statue, but he quickly came up the stairs taking a big knife out of his side and I realized what his intentions were so I ran out of the church screaming to alert the security,” Adèle Plamondon told the television network.
  • A paraprofessional in a Texas school district was fired from a high school after she was accused of sending sexually explicit photos and videos of herself by Snapchat to a 15-year-old student, the Houston Chronicle reported. >> Read more trending news  According to court records, Kelsie Rochelle Koepke, 25, of Katy, allegedly sent nude photos of herself to the student at Paetow High School, where she worked, through the Snapchat application, the newspaper reported. Koepke was charged with improper relationship with a student, a second-degree felony, and solicitation of a minor, according to the Chronicle. She was released on a $15,000 bond, the newspaper reported. According to court documents, Koepke exchanged Snapchat information with the student around October 2017, and began a chat relationship with him, KTRK reported. Koepke used the nicknames 'kelsie_koepke' and 'Momma K,' the television station reported, citing court documents. The conversations allegedly turned sexual in nature, and “she instructed him not to save any of their chats,' according to court documents. Koepke then allegedly sent the first set of nude photos and videos of herself on homecoming night, KTRK reported. Koepke told investigators she thought she was sending the nude photos to someone else, the Chronicle reported. When she found out she was sending the photos to a student, she said she did not delete him from Snapchat because she wanted to “keep the peace,” the newspaper reported, citing court records. The student allegedly receiving the photos and videos reported what happened to school officials on Feb. 28, KTRK reported. Paetow High School Principal Mindy Dickerson sent a letter out to parents advising them of the situation, the Chronicle reported.
  • If you enjoy viral posts, a “Little Mermaid”-themed hairdo of a girl who attends a Houston preschool is part of your world.  >> Read more trending news  Atlantis Castillo sported braided hair to resemble the ponytail of Ariel, the main character in the Disney movie classic, “The Little Mermaid,” KTRK reported. It was part of a crazy hair day theme at Clear Lake United Methodist Church’s preschool, the television station reported. Ariel Romero posted photos of her younger sister’s hairstyle on Twitter, and they created a wave of positive reaction on social media. “My sister had crazy hair day at school today and my mom was not playing games and really wanted her to win,” Romero tweeted Tuesday. The hairstyle featured a bright green-colored braid that looked like a mermaid tail, topped by an Ariel doll on Atlantis’ head that resembled a hair pick. The hairstyle was created by Atlantis’ mother, KHOU reported. “My mom did the mermaid because my name is Ariel and my sister is Atlantis which is where Ariel lives under the sea,” Romero tweeted. “We’ve grown up loving mermaids thanks to my parents.” 
  • City Council members in San Antonio approved a concession agreement at the city’s airport that will exclude Chick-fil-A, KSAT reported. >> Read more trending news  By a 6-4 vote, the council approved the Food, Beverage and Retail Prime Concession Agreement with Paradies Lagardère at the San Antonio International Airport. The motion to exclude the Atlanta-based chicken chain from the airport was brought to the floor by council member Roberto Treviño, WOAI reported. Chick-fil-A has a history of donating to anti-LGBTQ organizations, and the city’s vote was applauded by the Stonewall Democrats of San Antonio, a local LGBTQ political action committee, KSAT reported. “The LGBTQ community is excited that the City Council has decided to look for restaurants that support all Americans in our airport,” Chris Forbrich, a co-chairman of the organization, told the television station. Treviño released a statement Friday, saying the decision “reaffirmed the work our city has done to become a champion of equality and inclusion.” “San Antonio is a city full of compassion, and we do not have room in our public facilities for a business with a legacy of anti-LGBTQ behavior,” Treviño said. 'Everyone has a place here, and everyone should feel welcome when they walk through our airport. I look forward to the announcement of a suitable replacement by Paradies.” Chick-fil-A released a statement, calling the action “disappointing.” “This is the first we’ve heard of this. It’s disappointing. We would have liked to have had a dialogue with the city council before this decision was made,” the company said in its statement. “We agree with Council member Treviño that everyone is and should feel welcome at Chick-fil-A. We plan to reach out to the city council to gain a better understanding of this decision.”
  • The U.S. Coast Guard offloaded more than 27,000 pounds of cocaine in Miami Beach that was seized in the Eastern Pacific Ocean. >> Read more trending news  'It will all be offloaded by the Coast Guard Cutter Tampa today in Miami Beach Florida and sent for destruction,' the Coast Guard said in a Facebook post.  The Coast Guard said in a news release that the drugs are worth an estimated $360 million. The cocaine was seized in 12 separate operations off the coasts of Mexico, Central America and South America during a three-month period.  Using #notonourstreets, the Coast Guard posted video on Facebook of the seizure, saying, “Here’s what 27,000 lbs. of cocaine looks like.”  'It takes a collaborative and sophisticated network to defeat a criminal network,' Deputy Commandant for Operations VADM Daniel Abel said in a news conference. The news release also stated: 'The Coast Guard, Navy, Customs and Border Protection, FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement along with allied and international partner agencies play a role in counter-drug operations.  The cutter Tampa even participated in the first joint boarding in recent memory between the United States and Ecuador. The fight against transnational organized crime networks in the Eastern Pacific and the Caribbean Basin requires unity of effort in all phases from detection, monitoring, and interdictions, to prosecutions by U.S. Attorneys in Florida, California, New York, the Gulf Coast, Puerto Rico, and elsewhere.
  • The Georgia mother of a teen who recently overdosed after vaping THC wax is speaking out, hoping other kids and parents become aware of the danger. THC is the active ingredient in cannabis. >> Read more trending news Lacey Turner, of Butts County, wants to spare other parents the anguish that she and her son Bailey went through. Turner told WSB-TV her son could barely keep his eyes open and his blood pressure was dangerously low at the time of the incident. “When I pulled up to the school, they were loading Bailey on the ambulance,' Turner said. Turner described the harrowing day in January when paramedics rushed her 16-year-old son to the hospital. She said he collapsed after taking a single hit of THC vaping wax, provided by a friend, in the high school cafeteria. 'He continued to vomit in the bathroom and passed out until someone came in and found him,” Turner said. After arriving at the hospital emergency room, the teen was still unconscious and had an extremely fast heartbeat and low blood pressure. 'Cognitively, he was completely disassociated. You pretty much had to slap him and get him to open his eyes,' Turner said. Turner, a nurse, first thought her son had overdosed on opioids, and so did the emergency room doctors. They administered an overdose reversing drug. “They gave him a shot of Narcan -- absolutely no change,' Turner said. Urine and blood tests told another story. “He was negative for anything in his system, except THC,' Turner said. Schools in metro Atlanta have reported students falling ill after vaping THC or synthetic THC. Turner believes the high potency is the problem. “This form of marijuana can be 85 to 90 percent concentrated with THC,” Turner said. The mother is thankful her son has fully recovered, but thoughts of what could have happened still haunt her. “My son could have passed out there in the bathroom, hit his head on the toilet on the way down and died of blunt force trauma,” Turner said. Turner said that when she posted her son's story on Facebook, she got responses from kids and parents across the country who had had the same experience.