The Army has identified Command Sgt. Maj. Carlos Evans as one of four victims killed Tuesday in a shooting at another sergeant major's home in Sumter, South Carolina, just nine miles from Shaw Air Force Base.
The suspect, Charles Slacks Jr., was an Army veteran and civilian worker at the base and the ex-husband of Army Sgt. Maj. Aletha Holliday, chief culinary manager at Shaw. Police say he went into Holliday's home late Tuesday night, shot Evans and proceeded to murder his own children and his stepdaughter.
The children were Aayden Holliday-Slacks, 5; Aaron Holliday-Slacks, 6; and Ava Holliday, 11.
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Slacks died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Evans, an Iraq war veteran, was the top enlisted leader for Headquarters & Headquarters Battalion, U.S. Army Central. He is from Petersburg, Virginia, and joined the Army in July 2002.
"Command Sgt. Maj. Carlos Evans was an outstanding leader and caring friend who inspired and lifted up all those around him," Lt. Gen. Patrick D. Frank, commander of U.S. Army Central, said in a statement. "CSM Evans was well known and respected by all, and the influence and impact he made within the unit will never fade. We collectively mourn the immense loss of his presence in our lives, and our thoughts and prayers are extended to CSM Evans's family."
Evans' awards include a Bronze Star, a Meritorious Service Medal, an Army Commendation Medal with valor, and the Combat Action Badge.
Police say Slacks, who co-owned the home with Holliday, entered with a key. He had been handed divorce papers Feb. 21, and the process was finalized March 2, according to local reporting from WIS 10.
Slacks went into the backyard of the home, where he encountered Holliday and Evans, Sumter Police Chief Russell Roark told reporters Wednesday. Slacks shot Evans, who succumbed to his wounds after being taken to a nearby hospital. Holliday tried to stop Slacks and then ran to look for a phone to call the police.
Evans and Holliday were not romantically involved, according to police.
As Holliday searched for a phone, Slacks went into the children's bedrooms and killed them, Roark described. Holliday ran back into the house and up the stairs, where she saw Slacks turn the gun on himself.
Slacks worked as a civilian handling ammunition logistics at Shaw Air Force Base. He also served as a tracked vehicle mechanic from 1999 to 2007, according to his service record, provided by the Army. He left the service as a staff sergeant after deploying to Iraq twice and receiving a Purple Heart.
"From our family … thank you for your prayers, condolences, and expressions of love. … We love them and will keep them alive in our hearts and minds. Please continue to pray for us," Holliday said in a social media post Thursday, referring to her children.
-- Steve Beynon can be reached at Steve.Beynon@military.com. Follow him on Twitter @StevenBeynon.
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