The tragic shooting incident at Lockheed Martin has claimed another life. DeLois Bailey, wounded in the attack, died Tuesday afternoon at Jeff Anderson Regional Medical Center in Meridian. She was the seventh person to die, including the shooter, who killed himself.
The plant reopened Tuesday morning. Employees were allowed to return to their workplace. Deputies were stationed in front of the plant, checking IDs. Additional security was in place elsewhere around the plant.
James Crowther, a 23-year Lockheed employee, was one of several who were not at work on July 8.
"It was still kind of eery," said Crowther. "But I should return tomorrow,
I think. And start back on a normal routine, I guess."
In a private meeting inside, Lockheed's Dain Hancock told employees the company is committed to returning to full operation, but said the workers' well being is the highest priority. The meeting included a moment of silence for those who lost their lives.
"They didn't know how they would react once they got here," said Pamella Thomas, Lockheed's director of Wellness and Health Promotion.
"They got up enough courage to come all the way here but didn't know whether they could make it all the way."
One employee was overcome with emotion and was taken away by ambulance as a precaution.
"The employees need to know they're safe," said company spokesman Sam Grizzle, adding that armed security is and will be at the plant.
Lockheed has also opened an assistance fund for the families of victims who died as a result of events on July 8. The company opened it with a $125,000 contribution.
Employees who wish to contribute may do so either through payroll deduction or by sending a check.
Meridian Victims' Families Assistance Fund
Citizens National Bank
P.O. Box 911
Meridian, MS 39302
Total contributions will be divided equally among the victims' families, who will be free to use the funds in any way they choose.