December 9, 2004
../ Gunman Kills Dimebag at Ohio Nightclub
Nathan Gale stormed the stage during a heavy metal concert in Columbus, Ohio, on Wednesday night, firing at the band and audience and
killing four people before a police officer shot and killed him, police said.
The man was "targeting members in the band," Columbus police Sgt. Brent Mull said. One of the confirmed dead was guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell
Abbott, 38, of the band Damageplan. The gunman also wounded two people. Columbus police identified the suspect as Nathan Gale, 25, of nearby
Marysville but said they had no information about a motive or possible connection to the band.
Eyewitnesses stated that Gale initially shot the band's guitarist, Abbott, four times before turning on the crowd. The attack came shortly after Damageplan
began its performance at the Alrosa Villa nightclub on Columbus' north end. One of the wounded is in critical condition, and the other is hospitalized
with non-life-threatening injuries, police said. Two others were hurt and treated at the scene, although the nature of their injuries was not clear.
"Dimebag" and his brother, Vinnie Paul Abbott, 40, formed Damageplan after their previous band, Pantera, a group they formed in the 1980's, broke
up last year. Their father is Jerry Abbott, a country and western songwriter and producer.
A uniformed police officer who was near the scene slipped into the venue from a back entrance, confronted the gunman during the rampage and killed
him, authorities said. "If not for the officer who showed up, there would have been more dead," Sgt. Mull said.
At least one of those killed, Nathan Bray, was an audience member. Mull identified another deceased victim as Erin Halk, although it was unclear if
he was attending the concert or an employee. Mull did not identify the other fatality. Abbott was the only band member confirmed dead "at this point," he said.
Darrell Abbott grew up outside of Dallas, TX, where his father owned a recording studio. He saw many great blues and country artists come through
as clients of his father and he learned from them. He learned quickly. So quickly in fact that he was not allowed to enter any guitar contests in the
whole state because he'd already won them all...by the age of 16. It was not long before he decided to start up his own band. Eventually he gathered
up a collection of musicians and created the monster, we had yet to know, a band called Pantera.
>>> Digihear? December 2004
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