Last night, 24-year-old YouTuber Randy Stair unleashed a deadly attack at Weis Market in Tunkhannock, Pennsylvania, killing four, including himself. But in the weeks prior to the massacre, Stair gave chilling hints on Twitter that he was planning something violent in the days ahead.
According to ABC News, the attack took place at Stair’s place of business just before 1 a.m., with the gunman spending the first 90 minutes of his work shift blocking exits to prevent co-workers from escaping. Just as the night shift started, Randy went to his car to retrieve two shotguns before unleashing the deadly attack.
Stair’s rampage took the lives of three innocent co-workers including 63-year-old Terry Sterling, 26-year-old Victoria Brong and 47-year-old Brian Hayes. Following the murders, Stair shot up the store and damaged merchandise with bullet holes before turning the gun on himself. One employee was able to escape without injury.
The attacker was very active on Twitter, perhaps giving glimpses into what was to come. In the months prior to the massacre, he shared a series of chilling tweets, including one that referred to the rampage as the “Westborough High Massacre.”
“Ready to die? ‘The Westborough High Massacre’; coming June 7th, 2017. #EGS”
Another tweet referenced the afterlife and what Stair believed was in store for him following his death.
“The death of a soul isn’t the end of the line; it’s the rebirth of something beautiful.”
Two more days…. pic.twitter.com/2eYy7gKYDN
— Ember’s Ghost Squad (@EGSworld) June 5, 2017
But perhaps the most alarming tweet contained a link to a 42-minute YouTube video, in which Randy praises Columbine High School shooters Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris for their violent actions. The remainder of the video is mostly comprised of anime characters with commentary from Stair as well as footage of himself shooting targets outside and later kissing a gun.
An additional video message to his parents shows a troubled Stair confessing to cross-dressing on Wednesday nights while they were bowling.
“I was just a female soul trapped in a man’s body my whole life.”
On his YouTube page, Stair goes by the name “Andrew Blaze” and watermarks each video with EGS, an abbreviation for “Ember’s Ghost Squad.” The page title is allegedly an ode to his favorite Nickelodeon character, Ember McClain from Danny Phantom. Most videos contain animated cartoons with dark voiceovers and commentary from Randy himself.
In his final video, Stair includes a goodbye message in the video’s description.
“Welcome to a new kind of tension….This will be my final production and contribution to this world…I’ll miss all of you….”
— Ember’s Ghost Squad (@EGSworld) February 12, 2017
According to the Heavy, one friend left a tribute to Stair on his Facebook page detailing Stair’s recent downward spiral. In one part of the post, he even calls the shooter someone who “many people loved.”
“I just learned several hours ago that an online friend of mine had gone on a shooting rampage at the supermarket where he worked, in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Killing several members of the after hours, overnight shift, before shooting himself dead. Randy Stair was a rather attractive young man, who many people loved. Over the past couple years, his behavior had become more and more atypical of his former persona, and he had grown increasingly aloof towards his friends, as well as increasingly grim in his attitude.”
Further Twitter posts from Stair include links to his online journal on MediaFire that link to a suicide note and final journal entry.
“I’ve officially accepted that Wednesday night will be the death of me. Everything around me seems to have faded away. It’s felt as if I’m the last soul alive on this planet for the last week. I see people but they feel like an illusion. I’ve never felt so distant from society… and I love it,” he writes.
With all these chilling social media posts, do you think this rampage could have been prevented? Sound off in the comments.
[Featured Image by Randy Stair/Twitter]