Mothers, friends, performers among the dead at the Colorado Gay Club

A loving friend. A 28 year old bartender who loved to perform. A mother from a small town who loved to hunt. They are among the victims of the rampage at an LGBTQ club in Colorado Springs that left five dead and 17 others with gunshot wounds.

Club regulars and newcomers – gay and straight, transgender and cisgender – flocked to Club Q over the weekend to dance, enjoy a comedy show or work behind the bar. What began as a typical Saturday night of dancing and drinking among the prominent LGBTQ establishment in the conservative Colorado city south of Denver ended in tragedy when a gunman entered and began spraying bullets before being attacked and subdued.

The suspect is the 22-year-old faced five murder charges and five counts of committing a prejudice-motivated felony involving assault.

Here are the five people killed:


Daniel Aston, 28, grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma and moved to Colorado Springs two years ago to be closer to his family. He worked as a bartender and entertainer at Club Q and valued the venue as a sanctuary where he could be himself as a transgender man and perform in front of an appreciative audience, his mother Sabrina Aston said The Associated Press.

The self-proclaimed “Master of Silly Business,” Aston had a penchant for making others laugh that began as a child, donning elaborate costumes and writing plays for neighborhood children to perform. In college, where he was president of his school’s LGBTQ club, he hosted fundraisers with increasingly flashy productions.

″ (Daniel’s shows) are great. Everyone has to go to him,” his mother said. “He lit up a room, always smiling, always happy and always goofy,” she said.


Derrick Rump, 38, a bartender at Club Q, was remembered as a loving person with a quick wit who adopted his friends as his family.

“He was living his dream and he would have wanted everyone to do the same,” said his mother Julia Thames, who Approved his death to ABC News.

She said in a statement that Rump was “a kind, loving person with a heart of gold.”

“He was always there for my daughter and I when we needed him; also his friends from Colorado who he would say were his family too,” she said in the statement.

Rump’s friend, Anthony Jaramillo, said CBS News that Rump was “loving, supportive, with a heavy hand in his drink and just a really good listener and wasn’t afraid to tell you when you were wrong rather than telling you what you wanted to hear and that.” was really valuable.”


Kelly Loving, 40, had FaceTimed a friend from inside Club Q just minutes before the shooting began. Natalee Skye Bingham said The New York Times that the last thing she said to Loving was, “Be sure. I love you.”

“She was like a trans mom to me. I looked up to her,” Bingham said. “In the gay community, you raise your families, so it’s almost like I lost my real mother.”

Bingham, 25, said Loving had recently moved to Denver and visited the club while on a weekend trip to Colorado Springs.

“She was a tough woman,” Bingham said. “She taught me what it’s like to be a trans woman and how to live your life on a day-to-day basis.”

Loving’s sister, Tiffany Loving, told the newspaper the FBI told her her sister had been killed.

“She was loving and always trying to help the next person instead of thinking about herself,” said Tiffany Loving.


Raymond Green Vance went to Club Q on Saturday night with his girlfriend Kassy Fierro and her father Rich, co-owner of Atrevida Beer Co., a local brewery in Colorado Springs. The group was there to celebrate a friend’s birthday.

“My sweet baby. I will never heal from this. I want to wake up from this horrible nightmare. I pray that you will hear me when I call you. I am sorry. I will never forgive myself for putting everyone there I will love you until the day I can return home in your arms,” ​​Kassy Fierro wrote in a Facebook post on Monday, accompanied by a photo of the couple.

Vance’s mother Approved Death of her son told The Colorado Springs Gazette.


Ashley Paugh, 35, enjoys hunting and fishing and bagged a deer last week, her sister Stephanie Clark said NBC News. Paugh, a resident of La Junta, a town of 7,500 about a two-hour drive from Colorado Springs, was visiting with a friend for the day when they went to Club Q for a comedy performance on Saturday night.

Clark said Paugh has a husband and an 11-year-old daughter who is “devastated” by her death. It left the family reeling just days before Thanksgiving.


Associated Press news researcher Rhonda Shafner in New York and reporter Jesse Bedayn in Colorado Springs contributed to this report. Bedayn is a corps member of the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that brings journalists into local newsrooms to cover undercover topics.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, transcribed or redistributed without permission. Mothers, friends, performers among the dead at the Colorado Gay Club

Sarah Y. Kim

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