An incredibly heartbreaking moment was captured by local media when a man identified as a U.S. veteran broke down in tears at a memorial erected at the scene of Thursday's shooting in Chattanooga, Tennessee, as a local pastor knelt down to comfort and pray over him.
Brief footage shows an unnamed pastor kneeling down as the veteran — who is also unidentified — mourns the horrific events that unfolded, with WKRN-TV explaining that the video shows one of the "tender moments that have emerged" in the wake of monumental tragedy.
"A pastor came over beside him, kneeled down and started praying with him and for him," said reporter Samantha Fisher.
Watch the emotional moment below:
In a brief interview, the veteran expressed shock and dismay over how someone could so violently attack U.S. Marines.
"Why? Why would you try to hurt the people that volunteer to protect you?" he asked through tears. "The people that would take a bullet for you ... that doesn't make sense to me."
The tragic moment of mourning came after police say that 24-year-old Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez, a now-deceased gunman, attacked two military facilities, killing four Marines and wounding a solider and a police officer.