Friends and family are mourning the death of a beloved Christian youth leader who was reportedly killed last week on her way home from a prayer meeting after she was inadvertently caught in the middle of a gang crossfire.
Catherine Kennedy, 55, a Bible teacher at the Church of St. Timothy in Escondido, California, was shot in the head as she drove home last Tuesday evening; she subsequently lost control of her vehicle and crashed into a parked car before later dying at a local hospital, The Christian Post reported.
Police believe Kennedy, who married her husband, Kevin, back in 2014 and is also survived by a 24-year-old daughter named Alicia de la Rosa, was an unintended victim.
Authorities said two rival gang members might have been shooting at one another from across the street when Kennedy was driving by, with police pledging to use the full force of the law to try and find those responsible.
It is with a heavy heart that we share news of the passing of Cathy (de la Rosa) Kennedy. As you may have seen on the…
Kennedy, who was reportedly just four miles from the church when the shooting unfolded, was a dental hygienist at Brilliant Dental for 22 years, with that office releasing a statement on Facebook last Wednesday that mourned her death and confirmed some of the details that had been circulating in media.
“It is with a heavy heart that we share news of the passing of Cathy (de la Rosa) Kennedy. As you may have seen on the news today, she was the victim of a stray bullet during gang crossfire last night, Tuesday, March 7th, as she drove home from church,” that statement read. “Cathy was a longtime member of our dental family. She worked at the very same chair here in the office for 22 years. She was passionate about making a difference in her patients lives and everyone with whom she came in contact.”
Kennedy’s sister, Deborah Ware, told The San Diego Union-Tribune that her faith “meant everything to her,” with a spokeswoman for the Church of St. Timothy initially telling the outlet that Father Fernando Ramirez was too upset to comment to media about what had unfolded. That spokeswoman added, “Cathy was one of the most wonderful people you ever want to meet.”
The Church of St. Timothy is planning a candlelight vigil outside of Escondido City Hall on Tuesday, where Kennedy’s life will be remembered, and where the church will make a show of love and forgiveness.
“We know she forgives those who took her life, and she would want us to pray and work towards peace and live in our community,” reads a description of the event. “With this vigil, we will show our light of Jesus Christ and his love, peace and forgiveness.”
Police say Kennedy was tragically at the “wrong place at the wrong time.”
(H/T: The Christian Post)
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