Bill Wolfe Jr., a Pennsylvania little league and wrestling coach, was among the 59 victims of the Las Vegas concert shooting on Sunday night. The 42-year-old was at the Route 91 Harvest Country Music Festival with his wife, Robyn, to celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary.
The shooting happened late Sunday night, when 64-year-old Stephen Paddock fired at the crowd of 22,000 from his 32nd-floor room at the Mandalay Bay hotel and casino, across the street from the concert venue. It was the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, with over 500 others injured. Paddock was found dead in his hotel room by police, and his motive is still unknown.
Here is a look at the life of Bill Wolfe Jr.
Wolfe Coached Little League & Wrestling in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania
Wolfe lived in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, a borough southwest of Harrisburg. He coached for Shippensburg Little League and Shippensburg Greyhound Wrestling. In a Facebook post on Monday, Shippensburg Greyhound Wrestling confirmed that Wolfe’s wife was safe. The message was posted before police confirmed Wolfe’s death.
The Shippensburg Police Department confirmed at 9:23 a.m. ET that Wolfe died.
“It is with the most of broken hearts, the families of Bill Wolfe Jr. and his wife Robyn share that Bill has been confirmed to be among the deceased as a result of the mass attack in Las Vegas. Please continue to hold our entire family as well as those affected across the nation in your unending prayers,” the police department said in a statement. “At this time we ask that you respect the families privacy during this horrific time.”
Wolfe is survived by his wife and their two sons, Ethan and Trevor. He posted pictures of his sons on Facebook.
“Please continue to hold our entire family as well as those affected across the nation in your unending prayer,” the family said in a statement to the Public Opinion.
Wolfe’s Cousin Said He Was a ‘Great Person’ & Always Genuine
Members of Wolfe’s family and his friends painted a picture of a great man who loved his family in interviews with the Public Opinion.
“Me and the other neighborhood boys, we always referred to him as ‘Uncle Bill,'” Josh Hershey, Wolfe’s cousin, told the paper. “I was just in disbelief, I thought ‘this can’t be. This can’t be right.’ It took me a while for it to all sink in, that that was really him.”
Hershey continued, “When stuff like this happens, you know, it kinda makes you realize, never say it can’t happen to you. He was who he was, and he was a great person.”
Pennlive reports that Wolfe’s family is already on their way to Las Vegas. Shippensburg varsity wrestling coach Tony Yaniello told Pennlive that Wolfe was separated from his wife during the chaos.
Wolfe Was a Professional Engineer & a Co-Worker Called Him a ‘Class Act’
Wolfe worked for Dewbury, an engineering consultant group based in Virginia, in Carlisle, Pennsylvania and was a professional engineer. “All of us at Dewberry are deeply saddened by this tragedy and will continue to hold our departed co-worker’s family in our thoughts and prayers,” Molly Johnson, a Dewberry spokeswoman, told the Public Opinion.
Wolfe also worked for Carl Bert & Associates in Shippensburg from 2003 to 2009. Bert called Wolfe a “class act” who showed a willingness to lead his colleagues and worked well with clients.
“Our hearts are heavy and there has been a few tears,” Bert said. “Our prayers are with his family, especially his wife, Robyn, and boys.”
Bert also spoke of Wolfe’s faith, calling him a “good Christian brother in the Lord.” Pastor J.R. Wells agreed, adding, “He was very respectful young man.”
Wolfe’s life inspired an event at Shippensburg Area Senior High School called “Ten Ways To Help Grieving Children: A Community Presentation,” which is being hosted by the Drew Michael Taylor Foundation.
A GoFundMe Page Has Raised Over $20,000 in 19 Hours to Help Wolfe’s Family
Shippensburg Wrestling launched a GoFundMe page to help Wolfe’s family. They have raised over $20,000 in 19 hours and are hoping to raise $25,000. Two donors have given $500 each to help.
“We have begun this campaign in hopes of raising money to provide them with relief and financial support for the unexpected costs associated with a tragedy so far from home—food, travel, lodging, medical expenses, etc,” the wrestling ream wrote. “Any amount is appreciated and will go directly to the family!”
After the outpouring of support, the wrestling team thanked donors.
“We are in awe of the generous support offered to the Wolfe family by family, friends, teammates and strangers,” they said. “We hold them close to our hearts in this time of great need and thank you for the support.”
“He’s built a legacy as a coach in the community,” Yaniello told Philly.com. “There’s so many people who are upset about this. He’s going to truly be missed.”