People close to six of the nine victims of the Charleston church massacre have identified them to The Post and Courier: the church’s pastor, State. Sen. Clementa Pinckney; Cynthia Hurd, 54, a regional branch manager of the Charles County Public Library system; Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, a speech therapist and girls’ track and field coach; Tywanza Sanders, 26, a recent graduate in business administration; Mira Thompson, 59, a pastor at the church and an active member of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority; retired local pastor Daniel L. Simmons; Ethel Lance, 70, a grandmother who worked for 30 years at the church; Susie Jackson, 87, a cousin of Lance’s and a longtime member of the church; and Rev. Depayne Middleton-Doctor, 49, the retired director of Charleston County’s Community Development Block Grant Program.
A coroner announced Wednesday that each individual would undergo an autopsy. Each victim’s family will determine arrangements for memorials; the coroner also called the families “the most gracious group of grieving individuals” she had ever worked with. The FBI has initiated an investigation to determine if a federal hate crime has been committed.
GALLERY: Remembering the Victims of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church