A city official said that a second victim has died following a shooting at the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church Sunday in Knoxville, Tennessee.
The dead have been identified as 61-year-old Linda Kraeger and 60-year-old Greg McKendry.
Witnesses credit McKendry, a church usher, with shielding others during the attack which occurred as kids were performing a play.
Church member Barbara Kemper told The Associated Press that McKendry "stood in the front of the gunman and took the blast to protect the rest of us."
No children were hurt, but seven other people were injured. Five remain hospitalized, all in critical or serious condition.
Police said that the FBI is assisting in the investigation in case it was a hate crime.
One church member said that the gunman was shouting "hateful" words. Police have been collecting video cameras from church members.
The suspect, 58-year-old Jim Adkisson, is charged with first-degree murder.
The alleged gunman's motive is not yet known.
The church is known for promoting progressive social work, such as desegregation and fighting for the rights of women, gays and the homeless.
A church member told the media that the suspect was not connected to the church. He also said that the shooting happened as children were performing parts of the musical "Annie" during a regular service.
None of the children were believed to have been injured.
What does your church do to protect the pastor and congregants? Click "comments" below.
[Check out "Download Documents" in the right column of this Blog. One document is for security training for Ushers and Greeters.]