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Rose State mourns loss of student

A memorial for RJ Long was created at Rose State College. Long was killed during a shooting on campus April 24. Photo by Michael Palacios

By Valerie Scott

Midwest City Beacon

On Monday, April 24, students lost a classmate, parents lost a son, and several lost a friend.

Remembered as a young and kind soul, Robenie “RJ” Long touched the hearts of many as a Marine Corps reservist, employee at the Braum’s in Harrah and student at Rose State College. Long graduated from McLoud High School in 2021. He was only 20 years old.

The day after the shooting, Long’s family and friends gathered at Heritage Park in Harrah to honor his memory. There was also a prayer service held at The Village at Rose State College later that night. A memorial was set up in front of the Humanities building after students were allowed to return to campus, and the Braum’s in Harrah held a candlelight vigil later last week.

Emma Anderson was at Braum’s in Harrah after Long’s co-workers heard the tragic news.

RJ Long, 20, was shot and
killed April 24 at Rose State

“[I am] sitting in Braum’s, and employees are crying and extremely upset,” said Emma Anderson in a Facebook post. “It’s eerily quiet. They have suffered the loss of a friend.”

On Tuesday, April 25, Harrah Fire Department showed their support by bringing pizza to the Braum’s employees.

Several of the firefighters are former classmates of Long and the employees at Braum’s.

It was 12:16 p.m.

Class had just let out for Long. He and a female student were leaving the Humanities building when 30-year-old Brandon Morrissette, the female student’s husband, confronted the pair and shot Long with a pistol, police said.

Danielle Louck, who works on staff in the Humanities building, reported the shooter using the Rave Panic Button app, which immediately alerted all students, faculty and staff to the situation. The Rave Panic Button for Rose State College is also linked directly to the Midwest City Emergency Communications Center, and police officers were immediately dispatched to the scene.

The first officers arrived in about one minute, police said. Morrissette was quick to surrender, and a pistol was found in his backpack, police said.

Midwest City Police Chief Sid Porter said they think the shooting was “domestic-related.” In an affidavit, the female student said she had been fighting with her husband recently. She said her husband “has anger problems,” is “controlling,” and “always watches what she does.”

According to police, Morrissette is being held at the Oklahoma County Jail on one count of first-degree murder and one count of possession of a firearm on school property.

Considering the recent rise in school shootings, several students were prepared for the worst.

“I have been praying for friends and family of the victim as well as my classmates who were on campus during the shooting,” said Logan Housman, liberal studies major. “It is really sad this is what our world has come to. School shootings just keep happening. How are any students able to feel safe at any public school if things don’t change?”

Jeanie Webb, president of Rose State College, offered condolences to everyone affected by the shooting, expressed her gratitude to faculty and staff and thanked law enforcement for their swift response in a series of emailed statements.

“We are incredibly grateful for the strong partnership we have with the Midwest City Police Department,” she said. “While we always appreciate their presence on our campus, their exceptional efforts remind us of the importance of their role in ensuring our safety and security.”

According to police, this is the first recorded murder on campus, and students now wonder how the college will respond.

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