Teacher remembers Lee as 'ray of light' in his classroom

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said Friday that 19-year-old Paul Lee, a 2013 graduate of Westview High School in the Bethany area, was killed in Thursday afternoon’s shooting on the Seattle Pacific University campus.

Murray told reporters during a briefing in Seattle that Lee's parents had just arrived from South Korea, but offered no other details. Police have not released the names of the victims.

The official identity of the victim has yet to be confirmed, but Maureen Wheeler, a spokeswoman for the Beaverton School District, said Westview Principal Mike Chamberlain contacted her on Friday morning to say the victim graduated from the school one year ago.

"He's been with us since second grade," Wheeler said of Lee, who was a freshman at Seattle-Pacific when he was gunned down. "He attended Bethany Elementary and Stoller Middle School and graduated from Westview last June. Our deepest sympathies are with the family."

Two other shooting victims, 19-year-old Sarah Williams and a 24-year-old student, were in the hospital recovering from their wounds. A fourth victim was treated and released from the hospital. Williams was in critical but stable condition. The other student, who was not identified, was in stable condition.

Police said 26-year-old Aaron Rey Ybarra began shooting at students and others on the Seattle campus at about 3:23 p.m. June 5. He went to Otto Miller Hall and fired several rounds from a shotgun, hitting four people.

As he was reloading, Jon Meis, a desk lobby monitor in the hall, blasted Ybarra with pepper spray and tackled him, gripping him in a choke hold until several bystanders seized him.

Police said Ybarra was also carrying a knife and additional ammunition.

Officers arrived within four minutes of the first report of the shooting and called for medics, who arrived on scene and began transporting their first patient less than 10 minutes after the first 911 call.

Ybarra was in custody in King County Jail as detectives investigated the shooting.

Brian Bangerte, a Japanese language instructor at Westview High, said Lee's positivity inspired him as well as other students.

"Paul Lee was a ray of light in my classroom for three years," Bangerte said. "It was impossible be around him and not feel happy. He made class fun for everyone. His laugh and smile were both contagious. Everyone who knew him felt close to him.

"He will always be remembered for his infectious positive attitude," Bangerte added. "I know I will never forget him."

Beaverton Valley Times reporter Shannon O. Wells contributed to this story.

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