The Defense Department released the names of the 4 Marines shot and killed by Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez in Chattanooga, Tennessee on Thursday.
Gunnery Sgt. Thomas Sullivan, of Hampden, Mass, Lance Cpl. Squire K. Wells, of Cobb, Ga., Sgt. Carson Holmquist, of Polk, Wisc., and Staff Sgt. David Wyatt, of Burke, N.C., were are killed by Abdulazeez at a Navy operational center.
Defense Secretary Ash Carter expressed condolences in the wake of shooting attacks in Chattanooga.
"It is with a heavy heart that I learned of today's tragic events in Chattanooga,” the secretary said in a statement. “My thoughts and prayers - along with those of the men and women of the Department of Defense - are with the families of those killed in this senseless act of violence and with all those touched by this tragedy, including our Navy and Marine Corps family.”
Carter also expressed his gratitude to local law enforcement personnel for their swift response. The Defense Department will continue to work with them as they investigate this heinous crime, he added, and “will support our military families in their time of grief.”
The shootings took place at the Navy Operational Support Support Center, operated by the Navy, and at an armed forces recruiting center, officials said.
The Navy Operational Support Center is used by Navy and Marine Corps personnel, and is often referred to as a "reserve center," Navy officials said. It provides training and readiness support for reserve-component personnel to enable them to support the needs of the Navy and Marine Corps.
"The tragedy in Chattanooga is both devastating and senseless,” Navy Secretary Ray Mabus said in a statement. “On behalf of the entire Department of the Navy family, I offer my deepest condolences to the families of those killed and wounded in service to our nation during this incident.”
As the investigation unfolds, he added, the priority will be to take care of the families of those affected.
“I'd like to express my gratitude to the first responders on the scene whose prompt reaction was critical to stopping this individual from inflicting further violence,” Mabus said. “Though we can never fully prevent attacks like this, we will continue to investigate, review and guard against future vulnerabilities and do everything in our power to safeguard the security of our service members and their families."