OXFORD, Mississippi (AP) — A 25-year-old man was arrested Friday in connection with the death of his mother and 12-year-old half-brother.
Memphis, Tenn.-based WMC-TV reports Reggis Mister is accused of killing Carol Lavett Gary and Patrick Earl Gary Jr., who were found shot to death in their south Oxford home early Friday morning.
A motive in the shooting has not been released.
Mister, who was living in his mother’s home, reportedly has no previous encounters with police.
Authorities said they received a call about the shootings about 6 a.m. Lafayette County Coroner Rocky Kennedy said autopsies will be done at the state Crime Lab in Jackson.
According to Water Valley School District Superintendent Kim Chrestman, Gary was a teacher for 12 years before becoming principal at Davidson Elementary School. Her son was a seventh grader at Oxford Middle School.
Gary was described by many as a “rock in the community” of Water Valley, which is about 19 miles south of Oxford, Miss.
“She loved children and the children were her reason for working in the school system,” said Calandra Morgan, who worked with Gary. “The Bible tells us to let our light shine and that’s what she did. We knew that she meant business but she loved God and allowed his love to shine through her and love others.”
Gary graduated from Coffeeville High School in 1987 and earned degrees in education from the University of Mississippi and Mississippi State University.
Lisa Wolfe, a fellow educator, told The Oxford Eagle (http://bit.ly/rekix0 ) that Gary was a “true friend.”
“She was very involved in her church and had so many ideas to implement in the schools,” Wolfe said. “This is a huge loss to Water Valley and the educational community. She will be greatly missed.”
Chrestman said Gary had high expectations for her faculty, which made them better teachers and people. “You could not help but love her, nothing but good came out of her mouth,” she said.
By Friday afternoon, a makeshift memorial had been erected at the foot of the school sign.
“We have truly lost an angel,” said Morgan. “She will be missed.”