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Synagogue Massacre Survivor Cried ‘Mommy’ as Her 97-Year-Old Mother Was Shot and Killed by Her Side

By 06/14/2023 8:01 PMNo CommentsBy YidInfo Staff

In the nation’s deadliest attack on Jews, a survivor of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting claimed Wednesday that she watched her right arm “get blown open in two places” by the gunman and shouted “Mommy” after her 97-year-old mother was shot and died next to her.

As prosecutors finish their case against Robert Bowers, who stormed into the Tree of Life synagogue with a military-style rifle and other weapons and opened fire, shooting anybody he could find, Andrea Wedner was anticipated to be the government’s final witness.

In the 2018 attack, Bowers killed 11 worshipers and injured seven others, including five police officers.

The 50-year-old truck driver is accused of 63 offenses, including obstruction of the free exercise of religion that resulted in death and hate crimes. Some of the charges could result in the death penalty.

Wedner testified to the jury that the start of Sabbath services occurred five to ten minutes earlier when she heard gunfire and a crash in the lobby of the building. Rose Mallinger, her mother, reportedly asked, “What do we do?”

Wedner claimed to have a “clear memory” of the shooter and weapon.

“We were overcome by unfathomable horror. “We believed we were going to pass away,” she stated.

When Wedner and her mother were shot, she had already called 911. Wedner claimed that as SWAT officers entered the chapel, she kissed her fingers and touched them to her dead mother, wailed “Mommy,” and stepped over another victim on her way out.

Wedner testified that she checked her mother’s pulse and realized, “I knew she wouldn’t survive.” According to her, she was the only survivor in that portion of the synagogue.

Her harrowing testimony culminated in a prosecution case in which other survivors spoke about the terror they experienced that day, police officers described how they shot Bowers and eventually neutralized him, and jurors learned about Bowers’ toxic online presence where he praised Hitler, advocated white supremacy, and continuously railed against people of color.

The defense has admitted that Bowers was the shooter but contends that he did not act in response to religious hatred but rather from a hallucination that Jews were facilitating genocide by assisting immigrants to immigrate to the United States.
Officer Timothy Matson of the Pittsburgh SWAT team, who suffered a severe injury while ending the rampage, also testified on Wednesday.

He said before the jury that he and another cop busted through the door to the isolated space where Bowers had taken refuge before being instantly slammed to the ground by gunshots.

When Matson, 6 feet 4 inches tall and 310 pounds, was put on a stretcher following the shooting, he recalled thinking, “I must be in bad shape.”

Despite having undergone 25 surgeries to fix the damage after being shot seven times, including once in the head, knee, shin, and elbow, Matson claimed he would still enter the room through the door.


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