Pakistan exchange student, 2 substitute teachers among shooting victims

A Pakistan exchange student and two substitute teachers were among the 10 confirmed fatalities in the mass shooting at a Texas high school.

Sabika Sheikh, an exchange student from Pakistan was among the 10 killed at a shooting in Santa Fe High School on Friday morning. Photo courtesy of Pakistan Association of Greater Houston
Sabika Sheikh, an exchange student from Pakistan was among the 10 killed at a shooting in Santa Fe High School on Friday morning. Photo courtesy of Pakistan Association of Greater Houston

The suspected gunman Dimitrios Pagourtzis, 17, is being held in the death of eight fellow students and two teachers in Santa Fe, about 30 miles southeast of Houston on Friday morning. Ten others were wounded.

Houston Texans defensive end JJ Watt informed the school he will pay the victims’ funerals. Watt, who posted on Twitter that the shooting was “Absolutely horrific,” raised more than $47 million to help Houston recover from Hurricane Harvey last year.

The victims were in the art room when they were killed.

Sabika Sheikh

The Embassy in Pakistan has confirmed that the foreign exchange student died. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Sabika’s family and friends,” the embassy posted on Facebook.

Sheikh was a part of the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study Program, funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Another exchange student, Sayyed Zaman Haider, said Sabika was from Karachi City, The Washington Post reported.

The Pakistan Association of Greater Houston said on Facebook that Sabika was planning to return home to Pakistan for Eid al-Fitr, a three-day holiday that marks the end of the holy Muslim month of Ramadan in June.

Cynthia Tisdale

Tisdale, 63, was a substitute teacher at the high school, her family said.

“She started substitute teaching because she loved to help children,” Recie Tisdale, her son, told The Washington Post. “She didn’t have to do it. She did it because she loved it.”

She lived in Dickinson with her husband of nearly 47 years. They have three children and 11 grandchildren.

Tisdale’s niece, Leia Olinde, told the Houston Chronicle that Tisdale helped her shop for wedding dresses last year and was like a mother to her.

Ann Perkins

Perkins, 64, also was a substitute teacher and grandmother.

“She was an amazing mom and an adored substitute who was loved by all,” TNT Dance Xplosion, a gymnastics club in Santa Fe that Perkins’ daughter once belonged to, posted on Facebook.

Angelique Ramirez

Ramirez, 15, was “busting at the seams with energy and laughter. Vivacious” family members told KHOU-TV.

“She had so much ahead of her,” the family said. “CREATIVE beyond belief! She was a magnificent caretaker and a staple in her family. She stood up for what was right and made friends with anyone she saw as a good soul. A beautiful child finding her way and hopeful for her future. Beyond her years.”

Shana Fisher

Fisher, a “beautiful, smart, funny and talented” girl, turned 16 on May 9. “She had a lot of love in her heart,” her mother told the Houston Chronicle.

Chris Stone

Stone, 17, was described by a friend on Twitter as “such a sweet and funny boy [who] always knew how to make anyone laugh.”

Jared Black

Black, 17, loved anime and art, video games and sci-fi, wrestling and wolves.

Kimberly Vaughan

Vaughn’s mother, Rhonda Hart, posted on Facebook that her daughter was one of the victims.

“She is in heaven,” Hart said. “I am heartbroken.”

Christian Riley Garcia

Garcia, 15, had “grown up” in Crosby Church and his death was confirmed by pastors Keenan and Lorrie Smith on Facebook.

By Allen Cone