HAUGHTON, LA (KSLA) - Co-workers of Gwen Salley, who police say was shot and killed Friday, are turning their attention to how they can help Gwen's 7-year-old daughter, Samantha.
"It's just hard to feel anything really, other than you are in shock you can't believe it," said Corey Shadd, who works for Evergreen Life Services.
Gwen Salley's empty office is a tough reminder for her co-workers of what happened just three days ago.
Police say Mike Salley forced his way into his wife Gwen's car as she arrived to pick their daughter up from a daycare in Stonewall on Friday afternoon. He was armed with a shotgun and forced her to drive away. Deputies caught up with them on Johns Gin Road, just south of Keatchie-Marshall Road in south Caddo Parish. Deputies followed the car down an oilfield road where it eventually stopped in a clearing. Just as they got out and identified themselves, they heard the three shots inside the vehicle.
They say Mike Salley had fatally shot his wife, and then himself.
"Our hearts are broken with the loss of Gwen," said co-worker Kent Craft.
Gwen's office still remains mostly untouched, everything as it was when she left Friday evening. Co-workers put up a purple wreath on her office door to honor her life as they grieve together. "We did meet this morning as a home office staff and cried together and talked," said Shadd.
Salley worked at Evergreen Life Services for 16 years, overseeing the non-profit's finances and help those with developmental disabilities. "She was very passionate about our mission, loved the people we served," said Shadd.
Many who worked with her each day describe Gwen as family to them. "Gwen was dedicated, professional, trustworthy," said Craft. In Gwen's office were several photos of her daughter Samantha Salley, a testament to how much she adored her.
Gwen's co-workers moved those photos out of the way, to protect the privacy of the 7-year-old. "Samantha was Gwen's light of her life, she loved her daughter. Ultimately I believe that day, she saved her daughter's life," said Shadd.
Now Samantha is left without a father and a mother. Salley's co-workers have chosen to start a fund for her to help provide for her future. "We want to continue to make sure her daughter is taken care of, because we know Gwen would appreciate that," said Shadd.
Anyone can make a donation to Samantha Salley's funds at any Regions Bank. All you have to do is tell the bank you would like to make a donation to the account benefiting Samantha Salley.