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Motive Unclear, but a 'Cryptic' Comment From UNC Suspect

Meanwhile, Riley Howell's body has been returned to his hometown
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 2, 2019 1:03 PM CDT
This undated photo provided by Matthew Westmoreland shows Riley Howell.   (Matthew Westmoreland via AP)
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(Newser) – Slain UNC Charlotte student Riley Howell was given "a hero's sendoff" Thursday, the AP reports, with a police motorcade escorting his body from Charlotte to the 21-year-old's hometown of Waynesville, NC, 150 miles away. The Mountaineer reports that people who wanted to give Howell "a hero's welcome" were invited to line the final two blocks of the route to the Waynesville funeral home. Howell gave his life to confront the shooter who killed one other and injured four in a classroom Tuesday. A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to raise money for his funeral and other family expenses, but the funeral home has not yet listed service details. More on Howell and other new details related to the shooting:

  • Howell's parents, siblings, and longtime girlfriend appeared on Today Thursday. "There was no question, there was no doubt that he would have done what he did," his 14-year-old brother said. "He put others before himself ... He always has. ... He's always been my hero." Mom Natalie Henry-Howell said the family is "just beyond proud," while girlfriend Lauren Westmoreland added, "The last thing that I got to say to him was that I loved him."

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