Shooting victim remembered as hero for saving girlfriend

A man who dove in front of his girlfriend and saved her life during the Colorado movie shooting has been remembered for his selfless sacrifice, while an aspiring sports journalist was praised for her boundless energy.

The girlfriend whom Matt McQuinn saved by taking three bullets aimed at her wept as pastors spoke of the senselessness of the shooting spree at the Denver cinema where 12 people were killed just over a week ago.

Mourners packed a church in this western Ohio town where McQuinn was from, the same morning that others came together in San Antonio to remember another shooting victim, 24-year-old Jessica Ghawi. Other victims’ funerals were held last week, and more are set for the next few days.

When gunfire broke out in the Aurora cinema, McQuinn, 27, dove in front of Samantha Yowler and was shot three times.

Yowler, who was shot in the knee and survived, arrived at the funeral on crutches.

Mourners at Ghawi’s funeral also touched briefly on the massacre.

“If this coward could have done this with this much hate, imagine what we can do with this much love,” her brother told the church in San Antonio.

Ghawi had survived a shooting at a Toronto shopping centre just a month earlier that left two dead and several wounded.

She blogged about the experience, saying it reminded her “how fragile life was”.

James Holmes is accused of killing 12 in the shooting spree. He is due to be formally charged today.

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