Funeral Planned for Damian Meins, First Victim ID’d in Mass Shooting

Damian Meins was one of the 14 people who died tragically in the San Bernardino mass shooting incident on Dec. 2, 2015

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Courtesy of the Meins family

A funeral is planned on Friday for Damian Meins, one of the victims in the shooting rampage at a health center in San Bernardino last week.

The funeral was scheduled for 10 a.m. at St. Catherine's of Alexandria in Riverside.

Meins, 58, was passionate about serving his community, a message he took from the priests at his Catholic high school in Riverside and carried throughout his life.

Meins never strayed far from his church or its teachings, said Walter Hackett, who met Meins some 40-years ago in high school. "Service to others, helping others. He very much took that to heart," said Hackett. "Damian was a good, good guy. Funny and smart and tall. A real quick smile, very friendly and outgoing," Hackett said. "It's a real hard hit for all of us who knew him."

Meins married his high school sweetheart, now a Catholic school principal, and they raised two daughters, one a teacher. Meins was fondly remembered as the guy who dressed up as Santa for school pictures, according to a parent's social media posting.

Meins' Facebook page, where he can be seen smiling with his family in front of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, says he studied business administration at the University of Redlands starting in 1991. In 1979, he graduated from UC Riverside. He was also retired from the County of Riverside after working there for 28 years.

In addition to working at the in the public health department in San Bernardino, Meins was an Extended Care Coordinator at St. Catherine of Alexandria, where he also helped kids create Christmas art projects and religious murals, Hackett said.

Meins received a Community Recognition Award for his work in Riverside, which was based on "compassion, courage, forgiveness, generosity, humility, inclusiveness, integrity, kindness, respect and service."

According to the Press-Enterprise, he was the first victim identified.

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