Mercy Hospital shooting victims remembered with vigil

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Amid sounds of grief, first responders and medical professionals gathered on Saturday for those killed last month in the shooting at Mercy Hospital on the city's Near South Side.

Dr. Tamara O'Neal, Chicago police Officer Samuel Jimenez and pharmacy resident Dayna Less died in the shooting in which gunman Juan Lopez was also killed.

The shooting began in the hospital's parking lot as part of a domestic dispute between O'Neal and Lopez.

"We are gathered here today, not only to mourn, but how different our lives will be without them," said Carol Garikes Schneider, Mercy Hospital president.

Since the incident, security at Mercy Hospital has been strengthened as hospital officials and Chicago police work together to ensure a tragedy like this never happens again.

"We've been having conversations with them since that time. We can put the mechanisms in place," said Chicago Police Department Superintendent Eddie Johnson.

In another effort to honor the victims' memories, the Westmont-based Association of Physicians of Pakistani Descent of North America presented the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation with a $5,000 donation for the purchase of bulletproof vests.

While there was sadness, there was also hope for healing.

"I felt it was an appropriate time to reflect and then learn from out past, then grieve and then to go on," said Dr. Phillip Ahn.
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