Local family remembers mass shooting victim Celestine Chaney

Local family remembering Celestine Chaney
Published: May. 15, 2022 at 11:04 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - One of the ten victims in the Buffalo mass shooting this weekend, has ties to the Birmingham area.

Celestine Chaney just turned 65 years old on May 9, and just weeks later, her family is forced to grieve.

Several of her family members live in the Birmingham metro area, and her aunt Teresa Hagler tells WBRC that she will be remembered for her huge smile and contagious laugh.

“We call her Stinie, so Stinie has a laugh that you can... I can just hear her laughing now,” said Hagler. “Nobody has that laugh but her.”

Their entire family’s world flipped upside down on Saturday: “Just Saturday evening shopping and this is what happens.”

An 18-year-old wearing military gear and livestreaming with a helmet camera started shooting at a supermarket in Buffalo. 13 people were shot and ten of them were killed.

The shooting happened at Tops Friendly Markets, a place Hagler says Chaney visited frequently.

“Whenever we’re in Buffalo, we go to that same store,” she added.

Hagler says Chaney was shopping with her sister at the time of the shooting.

“You hear about it everywhere,” said Hagler. “You see it on TV, but you never expect it to be your own family. Uh oh, I don’t want to cry...you don’t expect it to be your own family and when you get news like that, it’s just devastating.”

Hagler says the whole family is heartbroken, including Chaney’s only child Wayne and her seven grandchildren. She added that Chaney survived two aneurysms in her life and she wasn’t meant to go so soon.

“She just a fun loving person that everybody that came into contact with her, they just loved her,” said Hagler. “Just keep her legacy going. Always remember Stinie. Always remember Stinie.”

Hagler is asking for thoughts and prayers for her family right now as they navigate this heartbreaking time.


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