VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) – The Vancouver community came together Sunday evening to remember a mother who was shot and killed in an elementary school parking lot in front of her children.
The woman and another adult were shot last week by the woman’s estranged husband, who then took his own life after leading deputies on a short chase.
Organizers of the candle-lit vigil have identified the woman as 35-year-old Tiffany Hill, of Vancouver. Deputies said her tragic death stems from domestic violence. The Clark County Medical Examiner's Office confirms she died from a gunshot wound to the chest.
More than 150 gathered at Esther Short Park to remember Tiffany Hill, to say prayers, share memories and show support. Event organizers call her a “shining star taken from us far much too soon.”
Several people spoke at the vigil, recalling Tiffany Hill as a devoted mother and a veteran of the Marine Corps.
“To most of us she was a friend, a dear friend, a best friend, a forever sister,” said event organizer Rene Sundby. “She was a committed and honored Marine – the pride she had in her country and her fellow service woman and men was immense.”
Tiffany Hill leaves behind three children, according to a GoFundMe account. Deputies say all of them were in a van at Sarah J. Anderson Elementary School Tuesday afternoon when 38-year-old Keland Hill fired several rounds through the windshield and driver’s side window.
Tiffany Hill died, and another adult in the car was taken to the hospital but is expected to survive. All three children escaped without physical injury.
Keland Hill then led deputies on a short chase before he shot and killed himself a few miles from the school at the intersection of Northeast Andresen Road and Northeast Padden Parkway.
Deputies say the victim had taken out a restraining order against Keland Hill.
Court records show Keland Hill had a troubled past with domestic violence involving Tiffany Hill, including attempted murder charges that were dropped in North Carolina.
The restraining order was granted in October, and Keland Hill only recently got out of jail after he was arrested for stalking.
At the vigil, several of Tiffany’s family members spoke, including some of her sisters and her mother.
The family members asked to not be identified.
Tiffany’s mother was visiting her in Vancouver when Tiffany was killed.
“That was my daughter, that was my best friend, that was my princess,” Tiffany’s mother told the crowd. “I tried to save my baby. I knew something wrong was going on.”
Several people shared memories of Tiffany baking for school events and helping out as an active member of the Parent Teacher Associations at her children’s schools.
“She would wake up at 3 a.m. to make homemade meals for our school staff on appreciation day,” Sundby said.
Sundby vowed to honor her friend by raising awareness for domestic violence and helping to end tragic outcomes.
“Our promise to you Tiffany is to move forward to change the broken system that we have that could not protect you,” Sundby said. “You are our flame, your strength will guide us and help us heal and your star will shine on forever.”
So far, nearly $80,000 has been raised through a GoFundMe account to help her children.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence in Clark County you can reach out to the YWCA. More information on its website can be found here: ywcaclarkcounty.org/what-we-do/our-programs/safechoice-domestic-violence-program/
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