SPRINGFIELD — The people of Springfield mourn the loss of a business owner who was shot and killed Thursday night.
The community paid tribute to Thomas A. Gill Saturday night.
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Brandon Lewis of News Center 7 said candles and balloons were at the front door of Gill’s Quality Meat Market on the 1500 block of Selma Road and people said Gill means so much to the city.
“It’s a sad, sad, sad time to lose someone like him,” said Dennis Williams, president of the Springfield NAACP. “The nicest person you’ve ever met.”
“RIP Tom Gill.” The message is part of his growing memorial.
He has owned Gil’s Quality Meat Market since 1998, according to the store’s website.
“I was only there a few times, but he was there every time. He was always friendly,” Williams told Lewis.
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Springfield police said at a press conference on Friday that officers found Gil with a gunshot wound to the neck on Thursday.
Springfield Police Chief Allison Elliott said: “Whenever our community is dealing with a situation like this, everyone is grieving, families are grieving, and our community is grieving.”
Williams told Lewis it’s hard to wrap your head around the incident that happened to such a beloved business owner.
“I will speak for myself,” she said. “I haven’t heard anything negative about Mr. Gill or his facility, so I’d say it’s pointless for this to happen. I mean, he doesn’t hurt flies.”
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Gill’s has a sign on the front door that says it is closed for the time being and may reopen on January 10th.
“I think all we have to do at this point is pray for our families,” Williams said. “My heart goes out to the family. We really need to put our arms around them.”
Springfield Police say contact them if they have any information that might help in this case.
Police did not release any details about the circumstances surrounding the shooting or information about potential suspects at a press conference on Friday.
Thomas Gill’s all-nighter is scheduled for Monday at 5pm at Gill’s Market.
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