UPDATED: Saturday, July 28, 2012 --- 2:40p.m.
CRYSTAL LAKE, Ill. (AP) -- The Stars and Stripes were flying as mourners entered a suburban Chicago funeral home to remember a U.S. Navy sailor killed in last week's shooting at a suburban Denver movie theater.
There were hugs and tears among friends and family of John Larimer as they gathered in Crystal Lake on Friday to bid him farewell. The 27-year-old cryptologic technician was based at Colorado's Buckley Air Force Base.
Larimer was among 12 people killed during the Aurora, Colorado theater shooting.
Larimer's girlfriend, July Vojtsek of Algonquin, has said Larimer pushed her to the floor to protect her from the bullets.
Ryan Dreifke, who attended the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater with Larimer, said his friend would do that for anyone he cared about.
Larimer's funeral will be open to family and close friends.
Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.
UPDATED: Thursday, July 26, 2012 --- 8:15p.m.
CHICAGO — The body of 27-year-old John Larimer, a Navy officer and UW-Whitewater graduate killed in the Colorado movie massacre returned home to Illinois Thursday, July 26th.
Motorcyclists with the Illinois Old Guard were on hand when the body of Petty Officer Larimer landed at Chicago O’Hare International Airport. They escorted the hearse to the funeral home.
Larimer was stationed at Buckley Air Force Base in Colorado. The 27-year-old was shot and killed as he shielded his girlfriend from gunfire in the theater.
A public viewing for Larimer is scheduled for Friday with a private burial on Saturday.
Like his father and grandfather, Larimer chose to join the U.S. Navy. He was serving at his first post, said his father, Scott Larimer.
A Navy notification team officially informed the family in Crystal Lake, Illinois, around midnight Saturday, a statement from the family said.
“He was an outstanding shipmate, a valued member of our Navy team and an extremely dedicated sailor,” said Cmdr. Jeffrey Jakuboski. “Sailors were really drawn to his calming demeanor and exceptional work ethic. He was also known as that quiet, extremely competent professional.”
“He was doing extraordinarily well” and had a bright future ahead of him, Jakuboski said.
His unit, part of U.S. Fleet Cyber Command/U.S. 10th Fleet, was stationed at Buckley AFB. Larimer had been in the service for about one year. He had not seen combat.
“We send our thoughts and prayers out to the families of the other victims and those still recovering in the hospital,” his family said. “We love you, John, and we will miss you always.”
UPDATED Sunday, July 22, 2012 --- 1:36 p.m.
WHITEWATER, Wis. (AP) -- The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater is mourning a graduate who was killed in the Colorado movie theater shootings.
Twenty-seven-year-old John Larimer was a Navy cryptologist based at Buckley Air Force Base. He grew up in the Chicago suburb of Crystal Lake, Ill.
UW-Whitewater posts on its Facebook page that Larimer was a 2008 graduate, and that he double-majored in political science and history.
The college in southeastern Wisconsin says the news of his death was heartbreaking and that its thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.
Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.
Updated: Sunday, July 22, 2012 -- 5:48 a.m.
John Larimer, 27, was among those killed in the Aurora theater shootings on Friday. He graduated UW-Whitewater in 2008 and majored in History and Political Science, according to a statement from the university.
Larimer, a cryptologic technician, joined the Navy in June 2011 and had been stationed at Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora since October.
His family said they were making arrangements to bring the remains back to Illinois.
In a statement, Larimer's family said: "We respectfully ask that the family and friends of John be allowed time and privacy to grieve for John and we send our thoughts and prayers out to the families of the other victims and those still recovering in the hospital. We love you John and we will miss you always."
Posted: Saturday, July 21, 2012 --- 9:43p.m.
Information from UW-Whitewater facebook page:
"We are heartbroken to learn that one of our alums, John Larimer, Class of 2008, was killed in the Colorado shootings. John double-majored in political science and history at UW-Whitewater. Our thoughts are with his family and friends in this difficult time."