WATCH: Remembering the Charleston Church Shooting – five years later


CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – June 17th marks five years since nine people were killed during Bible study at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina.

Five people survived the shooting in what is now known as the Charleston Church Shooting.

Church members gathered for a Bible study the night of June 17, 2015, where they welcomed a young man, later identified as the shooter, Dylann Roof, for fellowship and prayer before he would pull out a gun and open fire.

Rev. Clementa C. Pinckney, who was the church’s pastor and a South Carolina state senator, Cynthia Graham Hurd, Susie Jackson, Ethel Lee Lance, Depayne Middleton-Doctor, Tywanza Sanders, Rev. Daniel Simmons, Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, and Myra Thompson were all killed in the massacre.

Five others survived the shooting and were left unharmed, including Felecia Sanders, the mother of Tywanza Sanders, and her 5-year-old granddaughter, along with Polly Sheppard. Jennifer Pinckney, the wife of the Rev. Clementa Pinckney, and their daughter, 6-year-old Malana, were in Rev. Pinckney’s office across the hall at the time of the shooting.

In this special, we hear from former Charleston Mayor Joe Riley, Rev. Robert Dewey, who was a chaplain at the time and responded to the scene ten minutes after the shooting to assist.

We also speak with the survivors of the shooting, like Mrs. Jennifer Pinckney, and the family members of Myra Thompson, Cynthia Graham Hurd, and Chris Singleton.

And we join a roundtable discussion with local African-American lawmakers on what has changed since June 2015 and what still needs to change.

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