LONGMONT, Colo. (CBS4) – People gathered Wednesday night in the Somerset Meadows neighborhood near the set of mailboxes where postal worker Jason Schaefer was killed.
“One thing that I have learned through all of this is that he was like a little hummingbird. A butterfly. He just brought so much joy and whimsy to all of us,” said a woman who remembered Jason Schaefer as a mail carrier who took the time to talk to her.
“I thought it was me,” she said. “I would listen for the sound of his old … mail car.”
Residents in the upscale neighborhood welcomed postal workers who are still hurting from the loss a week before. Jason Schaefer was shot and killed while at the bank of mailboxes along Heatherhill Street. Police have arrested his ex-girlfriend Devon Schreiner, with whom he had a son and a longstanding custody battle.
“This answered nothing,” said fellow postal worker Brandy Brackett. “It wrecked everybody. It wrecked her family, his family, the people around him. That wasn’t an answer.”
Beckett knew both Schaefer and Schreiner. Schreiner had worked at the Longmont Post Office as well for a time. The couple’s son was a the source of tension between the two. Several years ago, Schaefer filed for a restraining order against Shreiner.
“He was always concerned about whether or not Devan liked him or if Devan was OK,” said Brackett.
“I just don’t know what to say I’m going to miss him so much,” said Schaefer’s mother Lori Hebert. She and her husband Chris were very thankful for the people who attended the vigil and who have been so supportive. “He’ll always be my son, I always called him kiddo.”
The vigil came on the same day when there was word of the arrest of 34 year old Andrew James (A.J.) Ritchie. Ritchie was in a romantic relationship with Schreiner, according to a police affidavit. Ritchie is now in jail without bond awaiting a court appearance on the charge of complicity to commit murder in the 1st degree. The affidavit indicated he could have contacted police if he knew Schreiner was talking about killing Schaefer, but did not. The killing on Oct. 13 came only two days after Schaefer filed an request with the courts to have his parenting time with the couple’s son modified.
“I’m really mad one minute and then just broken and sad,” said Brackett. “Why didn’t anybody help her?”
Postal workers Wednesday night recalled Jason Schaefer as a great softball player on the team they put together and always a great and warm friend. For many, it has been tough to realize he’s gone.
“It’s been a week and I’m like, are you on a long vacation?” wondered Brackett. “I’ve been waiting for a text and be like I’m so sorry, I can’t believe all these people came out.”