Last week Chicago lost three more promising bright stars; their lives were swept away in a matter of minutes by a gunman during a violent act of rage at Mercy Hospital on November 19, 2018. The gunman, Juan Lopez, took his own life at the end of the shooting spree.
Dr. Tamara O’Neal, who had recently broken off her engagement to Lopez was his intended target. Following a confrontation in the hospital’s parking lot, Lopez shot her several times, then ran into the hospital where he killed Pharmacist, Dana Less. Police officer Jimenez, answering a call of “officer needs assistance” rushed into the hospital where he was wounded.
In an emotional statement, Tamara’s Dad described his daughter as someone who was very involved in her church community and actively volunteered at school clinics. He concluded by sadly stating that he had been looking forward to someday grandparenting and spoiling his grandchildren.
Dana Less, a recent graduate of Purdue University, began working as a Pharmacist at the hospital this past July. Prior to that Dana worked as a volunteer, including in Kenya, where she helped children during the doctors’ strike.
Officer Samuel Jimenez had just completed his probationary period with the Chicago Police Department and become a regular member of the force. Before joining the CPD, Jimenez worked at a northwest suburban restaurant where the manager described him as hard-working, and goal-oriented – always looking for ways to better his life.
Doctors at the hospital tried desperately to save Jimenez after the shooting, but he succumbed shortly thereafter. As his remains were transported from the hospital to the morgue, thousands of Chicago’s citizens, including police and fire department personnel, lined the streets to pay tribute to the fallen officer. Officer Jimenez is survived by his high school sweetheart/wife and their three children.