Congressional aide among wounded in Alexandria, Va. shooting
HOUSTON (FOX 26) - A young man from Houston, who graduated from Stratford High School in 2011, is one of the people wounded in Alexandria, Virginia following a shooting at a Congressional baseball game practice session. When the suspect opened fire, a bullet ripped through Congressional staff member Zack Barth's calf. The 24-year-old man says when those shots were fired on Wednesday morning, he could see the gun aimed right at him.
It was just about the last thing anyone expected at a charity baseball game practice but the unthinkable happened and Barth ended up among the wounded.
"He was in the outfield when it happened," explains Zack's sister Ellen Barth. "He went to the ground. Everyone kind of dropped to the ground. Then he heard a few rapid fire shots, felt himself get shot in the calf,” She also says her brother ran to the dugout to escape the gun aimed at him and according to a family friend, he used a belt as a tourniquet to help stop the bleeding after he was shot. The family received the difficult news by telephone.
”It was definitely something extremely scary to wake up to,” says Ellen.
Zack grew up on the west side of Houston.
"It's just a scary time and we all have to be vigilant,” says Ellen’s neighbor Liza Faerber.
In 2015, Zack graduated from University of Texas at Austin and is now a legislative correspondent for Texas Congressman Roger Williams. He was in Chicago with his two younger sisters over the last weekend to watch the musical production of "Hamilton."
Loved ones say they don't understand how someone could hurt Zack and others, simply because they may not share the same political views.
”We don't all have to agree on every single thing," says family friend Cindy Stone. "Even on the big things, we don't have to agree but that doesn't give you permission to go grab a gun and shoot people. That's not what America is about.”
Zack's father is now in Washington, D.C. with the 24-year-old shooting victim. His mother remains in Houston.
”Having our friends and family around has really helped her, especially being able to talk to Zack and hear his voice," says Ellen with a smile. "He sounds great.” She was pleased to announce that her brother has been released from the hospital. Because the bullet ripped right through his calf, Ellen says Zack is walking with a limp.