Family and friends grieving over the 5 lives lost in Gilbert

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Amber Mederos, her fiancé Jim Hiott and Amber's daughter, Lisa By Mike Gertzman Amber Mederos, her fiancé Jim Hiott and Amber's daughter, Lisa By Mike Gertzman
By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman
JT Ready, the accused gunman who police say killed himself. By Mike Gertzman JT Ready, the accused gunman who police say killed himself. By Mike Gertzman
Brittney was in the home but was not shot By Mike Gertzman Brittney was in the home but was not shot By Mike Gertzman
By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman

GILBERT, Ariz. -- Family and friends of the victims killed in that Gilbert murder suicide are still in shock tonight, especially the two fathers who both lost daughters during the shootings.

These two dads will forever be tied together by their immense grief and lack of understanding as to why their innocent daughters were killed in what police describe as a domestic violence murder suicide.

“I didn't know. I didn't know. I didn't know.” Hugo Mederos said he never knew there was any trouble in the Gilbert home, not until he got the call that his ex-wife, Lisa Mederos, their daughter Amber Mederos, her fiancé Jim Hiott and Amber's daughter, Lisa and Hugo's granddaughter, Lily were all shot and killed.

Police said Jason Todd Ready, also known as J.T. Ready, did the killing, just moments before he turned the gun on himself.

“She didn't talk to me about relationships,” said Hugo. “I'm sure she told the kids not to mention anything about her private life."

Hugo said he was unaware of any domestic violence and said he'd only ever met J.T. Ready once before.

“I knew he had racism but I didn't know he was a Nazi or he was running for sheriff or anything like that, I didn't know,” said Hugo, who is just thankful his daughter Brittney survived the massacre.

“You know Brittney was in the room when she heard shooting she called me and said dad I heard the screaming the baby screaming I can't imagine she had to walk through there and see the blood,” said Hugo.

This father's pain maybe only understood by Lily's father, Jess Boggs, who is also grieving for the loss of his ex and his 16-month-old daughter.

“I just can't believe she's gone that's the thing,” said Boggs. “She was such a beautiful girl."

Jess Boggs said he never once thought his daughter was in danger.

“I'm never scared when Amber had my daughter. I was never scared,” said Boggs. “No I knew Amber was a great mom she was an awesome mom to her.”

Amber's co-workers at Wendy's, where she worked for the last 6 years, couldn't agree more.

“Everything was about her daughter Lily,” said Ashley Lopez. “Her promotion here, being motivated to get more money and work harder. Everything was for her daughter.”

Ashley last saw Amber Wednesday morning at 2 a.m. after they closed the restaurant together.

“She's always happy when she comes in here but the level of happiness she was that day when we closed Tuesday night, I thought she was the happiest person in the world,” said Ashley.

Who could guess that some 10 hours later Amber’s life would end in a mass murder suicide?

“Amber was a great person and it's unfortunate when bad things happen to good people,” said Ashley.

Boggs refused to discuss Ready or speculate on why this happened. He’d only say, “He decided to be a coward and take his own life and its okay he'll pay. The only one who can judge is the Lord himself and he'll get his judgment.”

Candlelight Vigil:

The community is holding a candlelight vigil

6 - 9 p.m. Saturday, May 5, on the lot adjacent to First United Methodist Church, located at 331 South Cooper Road in Gilbert. 

The vigil is open to the public.

Sanctuary Open:  First United Methodist will also have its sanctuary, inside the church, open for personal prayer during that same time period. 

The event is open to everyone.

Counselor Help:  Church officials also are offering their counseling services to the neighborhood.  Neighbors can call the church offices Monday-Friday between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Contact First United Methodist at (480) 892-9237