Pearl Harbor deadly shooting: Navy weighs beefing up security for Dec. 7 ceremony – USA TODAY
In the wake of a shooting that left two people and the gunman dead, the Navy is evaluating whether security should be upgraded around the Pearl Harbor navy shipyard before Saturday’s ceremony marking the 78th anniversary of the Japanese surprise attack in World War II.
The shooter was identified Thursday as 22-year-old G. Romero, according to a military official who spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity in order to provide details that had not been made public.
The Navy has identified him only as an active duty sailor assigned to the USS Columbia, a fast attack submarine that was at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam for maintenance.
Rear Adm. Robert Chadwick, the commander of Navy Region Hawaii, said he didn’t know the motive behind Wednesday’s incident in which three civilian workers were shot.
Two of the victims died and the gunman killed himself.
Tara Kapoi told The Associated Press that her 30-year-old husband, Vincent Kapoi Jr., was one of those killed. She said he worked at the shipyard and grew up in Waianae, a town on the west side of Oahu.
“We don’t know what happened,” she said Thursday, asking for privacy.
The names of the victims, all male Department of Defense civilian workers, will be released officially after their families are notified, officials said.
“We have no indication yet whether they were targeted or if it was a random shooting,” Chadwick said.
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The incident came three days before the annual ceremony that will be attended by about a dozen survivors of the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor by Japanese imperialists that killed more than 2,300 Americans and propelled the United States into World War II.
The naval shipyard is located on the Hawaiian island of Oahu across the harbor from the Pearl Harbor National Memorial.
The naval base said in a tweet that some of the survivors of the 1941 attack had already begun arriving for the ceremony. They will be joined by dignitaries and service members.
Chadwick said the Navy would evaluate whether security should be beefed up in light of the shooting. The shipyard said normal work would resume Friday.
“We are saddened by this incident, and our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families,” he said.
He said investigators were looking into any possible relationship between the gunman and the victims.
It was not immediately clear what type of weapon was used in the shooting, which occurred around 2:30 p.m. local time. Personal weapons are not allowed on base.
The former Naval Station Pearl Harbor combined with the Hickam Air Force Base in 2010, according to the base’s website. Eleven ships, six fixed-wing aviation squadrons and 18 submarines are at the base.
Contributing: The Associated Press
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