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THOUSAND OAKS | East Ventura County Focus

Local Resident Hurt in Shooting Spree

June 07, 1997|SCOTT STEEPLETON

Doctors on Friday tried to remove a bullet from the thigh of a Thousand Oaks man who was gunned down during a deadly shooting spree at a plastics firm in Santa Fe Springs.

But as 30-year-old Michael Gann lay on the operating table at Whittier Hospital Medical Center, surgeons discovered that the bullet had penetrated his hip bone and was lodged in his pelvic area, according to Gann's sister, Tammy Gann of Thousand Oaks. Despite the fact that doctors decided to leave the bullet alone for now, Gann was in good spirits, she said.

"He's doing very well. He's full of humor," Tammy Gann said.

Tammy Gann said her brother would be brought home either today or Sunday.

Two people were killed and four wounded Thursday at Omni Plastics in Santa Fe Springs. Police say 38-year-old Daniel S. Marsden of Long Beach, a factory inspector at the firm, went on a shooting spree about 10 a.m. after getting into an argument with his superiors.

Armed with a 9-millimeter semiautomatic handgun, Marsden calmly walked through the business shooting his colleagues.

Gann, a five-year employee of the Moorpark-based American MSI Corp., was meeting with another salesman when he was shot. His friend, Daniel St. George, was shot in the stomach, authorities said.

Marsden later shot and killed himself.

At American MSI Corp., Gann was being hailed as a hard worker who would not let anything, including a leg wound, get in the way of work. Company executive Tim Triplett, a 17-year friend of Gann and his family, said that Gann was on the cellular phone to his boss within minutes of the shooting.

"He's Mr. Attitude," Triplett said. "He called us on the phone not too long after getting to the hospital. He told us that as he was lying on the floor with Dan St. George, he said, 'Dang, Dan. Next time the price is too high, just tell me.' You can't keep a guy like that down," Triplett said.

Triplett met Gann when Gann was a football player at Thousand Oaks High School. "He hurt his knee playing football. I was coaching the Conejo Cowboys [youth football team] and his brother was on my team. He helped me coach over the next few summers," Triplett recalled.

Back then, Triplett saw potential in Gann, and five years ago when Gann came looking for a job, it was apparent he was still driven to succeed.

"It was a no-brainer to hire somebody with his attitude," Triplett said.

Word of the shooting sent chills through the 100-plus employees of American MSI Corp.

"When something like that happens to one of your own, it puts an instantaneous soul-searching on everybody here because there's no reason why that couldn't have been any one of our other salespersons, or me, sitting at that table," Triplett said.

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