‘We Were Just Enjoying Ourselves’: Bartenders, Patrons Among the Dead in LGBTQ Club Shooting

Five people were killed and at least 25 injured late Saturday when a gunman burst into Club Q, an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and opened fire. The gunfire ended just minutes later when two club patrons took the shooter down and held him there until police arrived, as CrimeOnline previously reported.

“I could have lost my life — over what? What was the purpose? We were just enjoying ourselves. We weren’t out harming anyone. We were in our space, our community, our home, enjoying ourselves like everybody else.” Joshua Thurman, who hid in a drag queen dressing room and survived the massacre, told the Denver Post.

Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers told CNN that 19 of the injured were gunshot victims, with the rest injured in frantic attempts to get away. Several of the gunshot victims are in critical condition. Police arrested 22-year-old Anderson Lee Aldrich, who was also taken to the hospital for treatment of the injuries he received when bar patrons stopped his rampage.

These are his fatal victims:

Daniel Aston, 28. Club Q bartender Aston, a trans man, told his mother he was a boy when he was 4 years old. After his transition, she said, he was the happiest he’d ever been. “It’s just unbelievable,” Sabrina Aston said. “He had so much more life to give to us, and to all his friends and to himself.” — Denver Post

Derrick Rump, 38. Rump was also a co-owner of Club Q as well as a bartender and was originally from Berks County in Pennsylvania. “Loving, supportive, with a heavy hand in his drink pouring, and just a really good listener and would not be afraid to tell you when you were wrong instead of telling you what you wanted to hear and that was really valuable,” his friend, Anthony Jaramillo, said. — KYW

Kelly Loving, 40. Loving was visiting Colorado Springs from her home in Denver. She previously lived in Florida. “She was a tough woman,” her friend Natalee Skyee Bingham said. “She taught me how it was to be a trans woman and live your life day to day.” — New York Times

Ashley Paugh, 35. Paugh lived 100 miles away in La Junta and had come to Club Q for the show with a friend. She was married to her high-school sweetheart and leaves behind an 11-year-old daughter. Her nephew, Jaden Harris, said she worked for a non-profit that helps foster children. “She’d always wanted better homes, better places for children,” he said. — New York Times

Raymond Green Vance, 22. Vance was on his first visit to Club Q with his girlfriend since middle school, her parents, and friends of her parents for a birthday celebration. He’d just gotten his first job and was saving money for his own apartment, according to his parents. “His absence will leave irreparable heartbreak in countless lives,” they said. — New York Times

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[Featured image: Top, L-R, Derrick Rump and Daniel Aston. Bottom, L-R, Raymond Green Vance and Ashley Paugh/Colorado Springs Police Department]