After hours of uncertainty, the U.S. Navy informed a Crystal Lake family that their son, a sailor stationed in Aurora, Col., was killed in the movie theater shooting that claimed 12 lives and wounded 58 people.
The Larimer family waited for nearly 24 hours after news of the shooting first broke, frantically attempting to contact their son, his Colorado Naval base and Aurora police, Cary Patch reports.
Crystal Lake native John T. Larimer's death was confirmed by Aurora police, an older sister who declined to be named told the Chicago Sun-Times. The 27-year-old was a Petty Officer 3rd Class had been assigned to Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora in October 2011, where he worked as a cryptologic technician.
The Larimer family released the following statement Saturday morning, according to NBC Chicago:
Last night about midnight a Navy notification team arrived at our house to let us officially know that our 27 year old son John was in fact one of the 12 killed at the theater in Aurora, Colorado. At this point our other son Noel is in Denver working with the Navy and the family here in Illinois to make arrangements to bring John home. We respectfully ask that the family and friends of John be allowed time and privacy to grieve for John and we send our thoughts and prayers out to the families of the other victims and those still recovering in the hospital. We love you John and we will miss you always.
Larimer, a 2003 graduate of Crystal Lake South High School who trained at the Great Lakes Naval Academy, is the youngest of five siblings, a family member told the Daily Herald.
"I am incredibly saddened by the loss of Petty Officer John Larimer; he was an outstanding shipmate," Cmdr. Jeffrey Jakuboski, Larimer's commanding officer, said in a statement early Saturday, according to the Chicago Tribune. "A valued member of our Navy team, he will be missed by all who knew him. My heart goes out to John's family, friends and loved ones, as well as to all victims of this horrible tragedy."