ALTOONA, BLAIR COUNTY - It was a year ago Tuesday when we heard the first sirens go out on what would turn into multiple shootings in Blair County.
911 got a call that someone had a gun at the Subway restaurant on 58th Street in Altoona.
Next thing we know two workers at that Subway are shot, and the shooter is on the loose.
Minutes later there’s an update. A third person getting his mail nearby is shot and killed.
After a foot chase through Blair County, police finally tackle the suspect... Nicholas Horner.
There's still a lot that has to happen until Horner goes to trial, but some facts about April 6, 2009 are set in stone. Scott Garlick and Raymond Williams were murdered that day. Garlick was only 17, getting ready to go to college, while Williams was recently retired after decades as an insurance agent.
In the past year we've mostly heard about these two men as crime victims, but family and friends of Scott Garlick remember him as someone much more special.
“It's just a break until you see him again kind of deal. That's the way you have to look at it instead of it's over, it's a break until you see him again,” Scott’s best friend Josh Conner said.
There is no question that Scott and Josh Conner were best friends, but a friendship didn't look too promising on the day they met.
“He always reminded me of it; it was fourth grade on the playground. We were tossing around a football, I missed and hit him, I was like oh no, I have no idea who this kid is, he's going to beat me down or something. I was really scared and he walked up and tosses the football and I said so do you want to play and it kind of went from there,” Josh said.
That was the kind of kid Scott was; the glue that held friends together. The much needed burst of laughter when things got too serious, he practical joker who always got away with it.
“I honestly could never get mad at him. If I was mad at him it was for five seconds and I got over it,” Asa Dickinson said.
“I'm extremely ticklish so he just thought it was hysterical and I knew it was coming every single time, but I would go along with it anyways. He'd just be like ‘pop it, lock it, drop it, break the pickle, tickle, tickle,’ but it would go a lot longer than that, he wouldn't stop, there was no end to it,” Aleyna Albrano said.
Six best friends and a brave younger brother. They're the people who knew Scott the best, and just a few who miss him the most. You can see a piece of them is missing when they talk about the boy who could cook up a good dish....
“He always made chicken alfredo for us at the house, he was a great cook,” Chris Garlick, Scott’s younger brother, said.
... And made magic on his guitar.
“Whenever he played it just came out of his fingers, he'd play the guitar and it was like wow I wish I could do that,” Josh said.
While these young friends do their best to forget what happened, they still know April 6th is coming around, a year since all of their lives changed forever.
“We're driving to the hospital because we knew he was at the hospital and I get a call from my one friend. He said ‘Aleyna, we have to tell you this, but we lost Scott,’” Aleyna said.
“Me and Vas are walking down the hallway to the emergency room and this lady came out. I never saw her before and she asked ‘are you here for the Garlick kid’ and I said ‘yeah,’ we kept walking and she said he's gone and I just looked at her like she was crazy,” Asa said.
Those tearful memories soon fade. Because these friends know the great kid they're talking about wouldn't want it this way.
“Thinking about him actually makes me happy,” Meg Pike said.
“He was more like a brother than a friend,” Josh said.
Underneath the laughter, these friends are mad. Mad that they didn't get to enjoy high school graduation with Scott, angry that they still play around at the high school field except they're one person short.
Don't confuse their anger with bitterness.
“He wouldn't want you to do that. He'd want you to remember the good times and go from there but definitely not dwell on it. Move forward. He had a future planned out, we have futures, he would want to see us succeed at them,” Josh said.
A year later, they don't remember the police sirens or tearful moments in the hospital. They remember Scott, the jokester, the talented musician, the best friend... their brother.
“We want him to be remembered how he was and the person he was, not what happened to him just the fact, he will be remembered for a long time in my life for the rest of my life, life goes on,” Vas Brenner said.