‘I love you’: Aurora victim texted his wife after he was shot

As he lay dying, Josh Pinkard made sure his wife knew he would always love her.

‘I love you’: Aurora victim texted his wife after he was shot
Crosses are placed for the victims of a mass shooting Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, in Aurora, Ill., near Henry Pratt Co. manufacturing company where several were killed on Friday.

A plant manager killed by an employee during a shooting at a suburban Chicago manufacturing facility texted one last message to his wife as he lay dying.

“I received a text at 1:24 from my precious husband that said I love you, I’ve been shot at work,” Josh Pinkard’s wife, Terra Pinkard, wrote Sunday in a Facebook post.

"It took me several times reading it for it to hit me that it was for real," she explained.

She described how she tried to do everything she could to get a hold of her husband after getting his text. She called his phone, texted back and tried to FaceTime but got no response.

Terra Pinkard would learn hours later that her husband, a plant manager at Henry Pratt Co. in Aurora, Illinois, was one of the five victims in Friday's shooting.

After getting Josh's text, Terra said she called the plant and a woman answered and said she was "barricaded in her room with police everywhere."

She loaded her and Josh’s three children into her car and drove toward the plant. When an officer stopped her at a street that had been closed and couldn’t provide information, she headed to two of the nearest hospitals.

"The police told us there were fatalities. He read my husband’s name. I immediately left and went to get my kids. With my pastors help, since family was still on planes to get to us, I told my children their dad did not make it and is in heaven with Jesus. I’ve never had to do something that hard."

She described in the Facebook post how Josh was brilliant, her best friend and the man she would've leaned on during such a devastating moment like this.

“The man who was dying and found the clarity of mind for just a second to send me one last text to let me know he would always love me. This unbelievable person was robbed from us,” she wrote.

Crosses are placed for the victims of a mass shooting Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, in Aurora, Ill., near Henry Pratt Co. manufacturing company where several were killed on Friday.
Crosses are placed for the victims of a mass shooting Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, in Aurora, Ill., near Henry Pratt Co. manufacturing company where several were killed on Friday. (AP)

Pinkard went on to thank everyone for all the support so far and asked for continued prayers for her mother-in-law, Josh's twin sister, her children and herself.

“Please pray that somehow I can put that one foot in front of the other. And again thank you for all the kindness you have shown to us.”

Josh Pinkard, 37, had attended the meeting where the gunman was fired.

A native of Alabama, Josh joined the parent company 13 years ago at its Albertville, Alabama, facility.

You guys. I can’t even begin to start saying thank you for the love that has been poured out on us. Friday afternoon,...

Posted by Terra Pinkard on Sunday, February 17, 2019

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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