Community reacts to shooting death of long-time Hurtsboro restaurant owner

HURTSBORO, AL (WTVM) - Many in the community remember 69-year-old Donald Hughes as a smiling face, a loving father, and a dedicated worker.

Hughes died following a shooting at his Hurtsboro restaurant, City Grill, Wednesday morning.

"He was a wonderful person. A father, a son and this is just tragic for our community," says family friend Harriet Susan Giles.

Many say they've known Hughes for decades, grew up with him, and had a great relationship with the long-time owner of City Grill. They say this is something that they've never seen in their fifty plus years in Hurtsboro.

"We all grew up here in Hurtsboro and when you grow up here everybody is your family. Donny was a heck of a guy. We're all going to miss him, says Thomas Heeth Caswell.

A local church says they are planning a prayer vigil to honor the life of Hughes and wants to encourage his family to attend.

"As a church family we're going to do everything we can do to reach out to the family and console them as well as help mend the town back together," explained Brandon Thornton, pastor St. Paul AME Church.

City Grill will not be open for a while. It is one of the only eateries in town.

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