Makeshift memorial set up at Seal Beach shooting scene
After darkness descended Wednesday, a group of neighbors and bystanders assembled a spontaneous memorial of flowers, candles and cards outside the Seal Beach beauty salon where eight people were slain and another critically wounded in a shooting rampage.
Some prayed aloud near the police tape that marked the crime scene. Their prayers went out to all their neighbors and friends since the victims have not yet been publicly identified.
Pam Rayburn, 53, placed sunflowers under the small tree draped with police tape.
She also left a handwritten card that read: "To the family of my neighbor: I don't know you, but I want you to know you are not alone."
Rayburn said she lives just across the San Gabriel River in Long Beach, but walks past the salon every day, goes to a nearby salon and considers Seal Beach her home. Her husband practices law from an office a few blocks away on the town's Main Street.
Rayburn, who works at Cal State Long Beach, lost her 23-year-old daughter to suicide four years ago and said news of the deaths Wednesday stirred up memories of that day.
She pictured the families of the victims being called by police with painful news.
"No family should ever get that call," she said. "It just doesn't make sense. It's such a small town; nothing ever happens," Rayburn said, wiping away tears. "Another tragedy, another senseless loss."
--Tony Barboza in Seal Beach
Photo: People comfort each other Wednesday afternoon near the shooting scene. Credit: Gina Ferazzi /Los Angeles Times