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Oregon shooting victim 'was British mother studying at college'

Published 04/10/2015

People bow their heads in prayer during a vigil in honour of the victims of the fatal shooting at Umpqua Community College (AP)
People bow their heads in prayer during a vigil in honour of the victims of the fatal shooting at Umpqua Community College (AP)

One of the victims of the Oregon shooting was reportedly a British mother studying at the college alongside her teenage daughter.

Kim Dietz, 59, was one of nine people gunned down at the Umpqua Community College in Roseburg.

She attended as a mature student alongside her 18-year-old daughter Shannon, who survived the attack unharmed, The Sun reported.

Aunt Patricia Fountain told the paper Ms Dietz "was so kind".

Tributes on Facebook described her as "one of the nicest ladies" who was "a kind soul" and "precious".

She worked as a caretaker at Pyrenees Vineyards, in Myrtle Creek.

Her boss Robert Stryk said she was "very energetic, very kind kind soul" who loved the outdoors, her daughter and two Great Pyrenees dogs.

"Really the tragedy here is that this is a woman who was just trying to better herself," he told CTV News.

Ms Dietz was reportedly born in Edmonton, north London, moved to America as a child and lived in Roseburg.

Lucero Alcaraz, 19, of Roseburg; 18-year-old Quinn Glen Cooper, of Roseburg; 18-year-old Lucas Eibel, of Roseburg; 67-year-old teacher Lawrence Levine, of Glide; 33-year-old Jason Dale Johnson, of Winston; 18-year-old Rebecka Ann Carnes, of Myrtle Creek; 44-year-old Sarena Dawn Moore, of Myrtle Creek; and 20-year-old Treven Taylor Anspach, of Sutherlin, were also killed in the attack.

Chris Harper-Mercer carried out the shooting before killing himself as police arrived at the scene on Thursday.

He apparently demanded to know his victims' religious beliefs before opening fire on the campus.

Carmen Nesnick, Harper-Mercer's stepsister, said he was born in the United Kingdom and travelled to the United States as a young boy.

Ms Dietz's husband, Eric, told People magazine she enrolled at the college to better herself.

She loved mermaids and animals and doted on the family's two Great Pyrenees dogs, he said.

The family moved to Oregon from Orange County, California, in 2008.

Witnesses said the 59-year-old, a former park ranger, was killed when she poked her head around the classroom door upon hearing the shooting.

Her daughter, in a neighbouring classroom, escaped unhurt.

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