ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – Less than 24 hours after a gunman walked into an Applebee’s in St. John and opened fire, we’re learning more about the victims he left behind.
Kimberly Ratliff-Penton’s husband George is having a hard time coming to grips with all of this. He had no doubt in his mind his wife would be coming home Monday after grabbing a bite to eat.
It broke his heart that she never returned.
“(The gunman) took a special person from this Earth and I’m just so frustrated now,” George said.
George Penton is heartbroken and feels a void after his wife, Kimberly, was shot dead inside of an Applebee’s Monday night.
“People got shot, one woman died and that was my Kim,” he said. “Dang, it just, it makes me so angry.”
Penton said his wife went to the restaurant with her best friend after a workout session was cancelled due to rain.
Inside, Kimberly, her best friend, and Kinloch firefighter Arlydia Bufford, were all shot by a random gunman.
“It’s a lot of anger in my heart because she didn’t do anything to anybody,” George said. “I know she didn’t argue with the guy or talk to him or anything, you know.”
What makes this matter worse, this all came just a short time after Penton’s twenty-year business went up in flames while they vacationed with friends over the weekend.
“I lost my business and I lose my wife 48 hours,” he said. “I just can’t believe it. I just can’t believe it.”
Though her time on earth may be over, Kimberly’s endless contributions are left behind.
She’s remembered as a loving mother of a 10-year-old boy and 25-year-old young man, a wife of 15-years to Penton, and a silver status sorority sister of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
“She loved AKA,” George said. “I mean, she has a closet full of AKA stuff. I used to be like, ‘Why you are buying all this AKA stuff?’ But she loves her sisters and she loved the sorority and was down for it 100 percent.”
As Penton grapples with the questions of why this random man would shoot and kill his wife, he is keeping his eyes on the silver lining that Kimberly left this earth with a whole heart and an even bigger legacy.
“Just thank God that the last words we had together was that we love each other,” he said.
A GoFundMe is setup right now to assist this family during this challenging time.