Florida officials: 2 with BK ties killed in Orlando terror attack
Two people with ties to Brooklyn have been identified by authorities in Florida as victims of the terror attack that left at least 49 dead in an Orlando nightclub.
Officials identified Enrique L. Rios Jr., 25, and Brenda Lee Marquez McCool, 49, as two of the people killed. At least 50 more people were injured in what officials are calling the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
According to McCool's Facebook page, she was living in Orlando but was originally from Brooklyn. She posted a video to her profile taken inside the club around two hours before the shooting.
According to a GoFundMe page set up by one of McCool's sons, she was a single mother of 11 children.
Rios was social worker for the True Care Home Health Care company in Brooklyn. Family members say he was visiting Orlando for a friend's birthday.
Rios' mother spoke with reporters outside her Bed-Stuy home at the Marcy Houses Monday, telling News 12 she is traveling to Orlando to properly identify her son's body. Neighbors say Rios grew up in the house and has three brothers and two sisters.
Neighbors close to the family say he often attended church services at the Greater Free Gift Baptist Church in Brooklyn.
Rios' mother says she is relying on her faith in God, and that she forgives her son's killer.
"There's always room for forgiveness, I'm not angry at the gunman, I'm not angry about the situation. I'm forever going to miss my son but I've been taught to believe that my son knew the Lord Jesus Christ and so I still have the hope that I'm going to see him again one day."
Rios' mother also created a GoFundMe page to raise money to bring her son's body home to Brooklyn. She has already exceeded her $4,000 goal.
Several vigils are being held throughout the city, including one at the Stonewall Inn in Manhattan from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to honor the victims of the attack.