The actress & her former Fox News correspondent husband asked for answers via social media when Alaina Housley was missing hours after the mass shooting.
After a mass shooting took place in Southern California on Wednesday night, actress Tamera Mowry-Housley and her husband, former Fox News correspondent Adam Housley, searched for information about their niece via social media. After hours of searching for Alaina Housley, the pair announced through their representative that they learned she was among the victims.
“Our hearts are broken,” they told The Hollywood Reporter in a joint statement on Thursday. “We just learned that our niece Alaina was one of the victims of last night’s shooting at Borderline bar in Thousand Oaks. Alaina was an incredible young woman with so much life ahead of her and we are devastated that her life was cut short in this manner. We thank everyone for your prayers and ask for privacy at this time.”
According to friends who were with her, Alaina Housley, an 18-year-old Pepperdine freshman, was at Thousand Oaks’ Borderline Bar & Grill when a gunman opened fire in the early hours Thursday morning. Tracking on her iPhone and Apple Watch put her location on the dance floor as of Thursday morning while Adam Housley searched the hospital and crime scene for his niece.
The gunman, who killed 12 people including the responding sheriff’s sergeant, also died in the incident, apparently taking his own life.
Six hours after the attack, Mowry-Housley responded to a tweet from her niece’s college suitemate, who said that she was still missing after the shooting. “Ashely this is her aunt Tamera Mowry Housley. Can you please DM me your information?” the Real host wrote.
Alaina Housley’s suitemate responded, telling Mowry-Housley that she had already made contact with the Sister, Sister alum’s husband: “I’ve been in contact with Adam, unfortunately there’s nothing new to report at the moment.” She later informed her that the other girls who were with Alaina Housley had been accounted for, but Alaina Housley had not.
Later, Adam Housley asked his 100,000 Twitter followers for prayers. “Please pray if you believe…pray,” he wrote. When a follower asked what to pray for, Housley wrote: “My niece. A beautiful soul.”
On Thursday morning, when actress Holly Robinson Peete asked Adam Housley if his niece had been located yet, he responded, “No” with a praying hands emoji. Hours later, another follower asked if Housley had heard anything about his niece, to which he responded, “Nothing.”
Adam Housley added that they were “staying positive and praying and hoping and wishing there was more I could do,” and Tia Mowry-Hardrict, twin sister to Tamera, said she “woke up shocked. Please pray. Please pray. I am numb.” She also posted a picture of Alaina Housley and asked for anyone who has information to reach out.
Adam Housley spoke to the L.A. Times later on Thursday, telling them, “My gut is saying she’s inside the bar, dead. I’m hoping I’m wrong.” Housley said two of his niece’s suitemates jumped through a broken window to escape and are in the hospital with major wounds. The friends kept running and told Housley that they lost his niece amid the chaos.
The attack was the deadliest mass shooting in the United States since 17 classmates and teachers were killed by a gunman at a Parkland, Florida, high school in February. It also came less than two weeks after 11 people were killed during a shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh.
Borderline Bar & Grill hosts a weekly college night and is frequented by students of nearby schools including California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, California State University Channel Islands in Camarillo, Pepperdine University in Malibu and Moorpark College in Moorpark.
President Donald Trump responded to news of the shooting on Thursday morning. “Great bravery shown by police,” he tweeted. “God bless all of the victims and families of the victims.”
The Real, the syndicated daytime talk show co-hosted by Mowry-Housley, aired a pretaped episode on Thursday.
This article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.