Hundreds of Haitians Gather in Church to Mourn Killings

( – The continued violence in Haiti has cost a missionary couple from the U.S. their lives, after they were counted among the dead in a deadly ambush perpetuated by members of one of the island nation’s numerous gangs that have taken over the streets of the country’s capital, Port-au-Prince.

Davy and Natalie Lloyd, along with a Haitian man who was serving as their guide, were killed by armed men as the group was leaving a youth activity at a local church located in the Port-au-Prince community of Lizon. The third victim was identified as Jude Montis, who was working for the Missions In Haiti Inc. organization as country director.

Esuaue Montis, Jude’s brother who was also with the party when they were ambushed, said that the they were specifically targeted by the gang members, who identified them as people “working for the orphanage,” which referenced Mission In Haiti’s school in the country. Esuaue said that it was the first time the organization had been targeted. He is now looking for a means to flee the country.

Davy Lloyd was only 23 while Natalie was only 21, and the couple were just about to reach their second anniversary in June this year.

“They just wanted to help the people there,” Hannah Cornett, Davy’s sister, said of her brother’s and sister-in-law’s decision to stay in Haiti despite heightened tensions and danger in the country. Davy and Hannah’s family also lived in Haiti for a time – their parents were also missionaries – which reinforced Davy’s love for the people living there. Davy and Hannah’s parents were also the founders of Missions In Haiti.

“Davy spoke Creole before he spoke English. It was home,” Cornett said.

A memorial service for the three victims held recently saw hundreds of people brave the dangerous streets to attend. Montis and the Lloyds were well-loved by the people whom they served. The 47-year-old Montis, however, also left behind a wife and two young children, aged 2 and 6.

The U.S. government successfully negotiated to have Davy and Natalie’s remains flown back to the Neosho, Missouri to their families and loved ones.

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