Ryan Keith Cox

A disgruntled employee opened fire in a city government building in Virginia Beach, Virginia, on May 31, 2019, after killing two men outside. As the shooter moved throughout the offices shooting others, word spread that there was an active shooter in the building. A group of at least seven colleagues attempted to flee, but they were directed to change course when they encountered 50-year-old Ryan Keith Cox, an account clerk of Virginia Beach. Cox directed the group to quietly enter an office and barricade themselves inside. Cox refused his colleagues’ pleas to enter the office with them and told one co-worker that he needed to see if anyone else needed help. Shortly, the assailant encountered Cox a few feet from the closed office door, fatally shooting him before shooting others in the building; the colleagues secured in the office were not injured. After a shootout with police, the assailant was shot dead. Cox was among 12 people who died and four people who were critically injured.