Bellefonte

State College shooter’s ‘Hometown Hero’ banner removed

A timeline of the Thursday night shooting that left 4 dead

State College police chief John Gardner releases a timeline and the names of the victims involved in the shooting that occurred on Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019.
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State College police chief John Gardner releases a timeline and the names of the victims involved in the shooting that occurred on Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019.

The Hometown Hero banner for the man police say shot and killed himself and three others in State College was removed Wednesday and given to his mother.

Jordan Witmer served in the Army before he critically injured Nicole Abrino, killed Dean and Steven Beachy, George McCormick and himself. The 21-year-old’s banner was hung in Bellefonte.

Witmer completed a four-year enlistment in the Army and received an honorable discharge in December 2018, according to his obituary.

According to Historic Bellefonte, one of three groups involved with hanging the banners, the banner program is a tribute to those who’ve served or are serving in a branch of the military. Each banner includes a veteran’s photo and honors their sacrifices and contributions.

“The Hometown Hero banner program, traditionally, is a simple street light banner project that has become a tribute to our service men and women,” the organization’s website said. “And not just a tribute, but an initiative to re-invigorate our community and to remember that we all do share a common bond and that those soldiers who are and who have served our country around the world are our family members, neighbors and friends.”

Hometown Heroes committee member Sally Houser declined to answer questions Thursday about the banner’s removal.

The decision was first reported by WJAC.

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Bret Pallotto primarily reports on courts and crime for the Centre Daily Times. He grew up in Lewistown and graduated from Lock Haven University.
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