Three elderly Alabama churchgoers were killed by a 70-year-old arms dealer at a 'Boomers Potluck' party.

Robert Findlay Smith showed up for a potluck dinner where he pulled out a handgun and killed three of the elderly participants, reported the Associated Press. A former pastor said that members of the St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church were spared further violence Thursday evening when one of them rushed the gunman, hit him with a chair and held him until police arrived.

The Jefferson County district attorney announced that Smith was charged with capital murder Friday.

The Reverend Doug Carpenter, St. Stephen’s pastor for three decades before he retired in 2005, said that all three shooting victims were members attending a monthly dinner at the church. One victim’s wife and other witnesses recounted the tragedy, he said. They shared that a man who introduced himself as “Mr. Smith” sat at a table by himself.

Carpenter said that people tried to speak to him and "he was kind of distant and very much a loner." He shared that at Thursday’s dinner, church member Walter Bartlett Rainey invited the man to join his table, but he turned down the offer. Rainey’s wife noticed that the man wasn’t eating anything. Carpenter said that Linda Rainey offered to "fix a plate for him, and he turned that down." Carpenter shared that soon afterward, the man drew his gun and opened fire.

Walter and two other church members were shot. Walter, 84, died at the scene, but his wife of six decades wasn’t harmed. His family said in a statement that they are all grateful that she was spared and that he "died in her arms while she murmured words of comfort and love into his ears." Sarah Yeager, 75, died soon afterward at a hospital, and a woman aged 84 died Friday, said police.

Police Captain Shane Ware said Smith and the three victims were all white, and that cops are investigating what motivated the suspect. Even though he claimed to have been a past attendee of the church, survivors said that they didn't recognize him from past services, reported Daily Mail. His mugshot showed him with a big black eye. It is believed to have been inflicted after a person flew at him with a chair in a bid to stop him shooting.

Ware said that a person in the room at the time of the shooting restrained the suspect and held him until cops arrived, reported CBS New. Ware described the person that subdued the suspect "a hero," and that the person's actions were "extremely critical in saving lives."

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