WALNUT (CBS) — Members of a Sikh temple in Walnut are mourning two brothers who were killed in Sunday’s temple massacre in Wisconsin.
40-year-old Wade Michael Page allegedly killed six people and critically wounded three others at Milwaukee’s Sikh Temple of Wisconsin. An officer shot and killed the suspect.
45-year-old Ranjit Singh was one of the victims. He worked at the Gurdwara, or temple, for the past 16 years to send money back to his wife and three children in India.
Walnut temple member Gurmeet Kaur was Ranjit’s sister-in-law. She told KCAL9’s Serene Branson about her devastating loss.
“(His wife) hadn’t seen her husband in so long. To hear he had been murdered brutally while serving god is the worst news any wife would want to hear,” said Kaur, who was assisted by a translator.
Ranjit’s younger brother, Sita Singh, was also lost in the shooting. He just moved to Wisconsin six months ago and wanted a better life for his family.
“They were being honest men; working hard, doing really pure things every day to make money, and it ended horribly,” said Kaur.
Even though there are more than an estimated 500,000 Sikhs in the United States, temple leaders say they’re a misunderstood minority and frequent target of bias since September 11th.
“We are a very peace loving people. We welcome everybody. We work hard, we create jobs in America, and this is what happened. Very sad situation yesterday,” said temple leader Swaran Dabgotra.
Walnut temple members are planning a special candlelight vigil Wednesday night.