Tamera Mowry-Housley and husband say niece died in ‘senseless’ Thousand Oaks shooting

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November 8, 2018 11:15 pm Published by

A California shooting left “The Real” host and “Sister, Sister” star Tamera Mowry-Housley and her husband, Adam Housley, devastated after they discovered their 18-year-old niece Alaina Housley was one of the victims.

“I’ve been on your side the whole time, and to be on this side’s not fun,” Housley, a former Fox News correspondent told Entertainment Tonight Thursday. “She was an incredible, beautiful girl who didn’t hurt anybody, and was excited to go to Italy for a program overseas.”

Housley described his goddaughter as a “really good girl” and “good human being,” adding that her death is “just senseless.” Alaina is the daughter of his brother, Arik Housley.

A statement issued to USA TODAY on behalf of the Housley family confirmed their niece was a victim in the mass shooting that left 12 dead about 40 miles west of Los Angeles late Wednesday after a gunman opened fire inside a country music dance bar. 

“Our hearts are broken. We just learned that our niece Alaina was one of the victims of last night’s shooting at Borderline bar in Thousand Oaks,” the couple stated via their joint representative, Chantal Artur. “Alaina was an incredible young woman with so much life ahead of her, and we are devastated that her life was cut short in this manner. We thank everyone for your prayers and ask for privacy at this time.”

Alaina, a freshman at Pepperdine University (her uncle’s alma mater), had gone to the Borderline Bar and Grill to line dance with friends. 

At Vintage High School, Housley was an honors student who played on the varsity soccer team and served in student government all four years before graduating in June. 

Vintage High School principal Sarah O’Connor remembered her as a “natural leader and connector,” who was loved by her peers and the school staff. “One of my favorite moments was when Alaina, who played violin in our orchestra, had all of the violinists play ‘Happy Birthday’ for her mom one year. Her mom is an employee here,” O’Connor told USA TODAY.

Mowry-Housley’s twin and “Sister, Sister” co-star, Tia Mowry, took to Twitter to share the family’s agony: “Our sweet Alaina Housely is gone. We love you. We are devastated.”

Related: Young people with ‘so much life ahead’ of them: These are the Thousand Oaks victims

Earlier Thursday, the couple took to social media to frantically look for Alaina.

Responding to a tweet about a person’s missing suitemate, Mowry-Housley wrote, “This is her aunt Tamera Mowry Housley. Can you please DM me your information?”

The suitemate tweeted that she’d been in contact with “Adam” and that their niece, Alaina Housley, was the only one out of “a handful of girls (who) went to line dance tonight” who were unaccounted for.

Housley asked his nearly 100,000 Twitter followers for prayers: “Please pray if you believe….pray” for his niece, whom he described as “a beautiful soul.”

Los Angeles Times reporter Andrea Castillo shared on Twitter that Housley visited the Los Robles Regional Medical Center looking for his niece. He also stopped by the bar in hopes of finding her, ET! reported. 

“A guard didn’t let him through, saying (the hospital) was on lockdown,” Castillo, who was at the hospital, tweeted. “He said Alaina, a Pepperdine freshman, was at the bar with several friends. Her Apple Watch and iPhone still showed her location on the dance floor.”

Castillo tweeted, “Housley said two of Alaina’s suite mates jumped through a broken window to escape and are at a hospital with major glass wounds. As they ran away from the bar, someone screamed ‘Hey! Get the (expletive) down on the ground!’ They told Housley they believe it was the gunman.”

“But they kept running toward houses near Los Robles Greens golf course, where they got help from residents,” Castillo wrote.

Housley told the LA Times he feared the worst.

“My gut is saying she’s inside the bar, dead,” he said. “I’m hoping I’m wrong.”

At 10:34 a.m. EST, Housley updated his followers that he had heard “nothing” about his niece, as his wife noted on her Twitter account, “We haven’t found her yet. It’s been 7 hrs since the shooting.”

Later Thursday morning, Housley took his grief to Facebook. “I really don’t know what to say other than I love this girl with all my heart and I’d give my life right now for a miracle,” he captioned a photo of his niece.

His wife’s twin said she, “Woke up shocked,” asking her followers to “Please pray. Please pray. I am numb.”

She shared an Instagram photo and asked her followers to share any information they may have. 

“Alaina Housley we are praying. We love u! If you know anything or any information please let us know. We love you! #borderline,” Mowry wrote.

Mowry-Housley gushed over her niece on Instagram in March last year.

The actress captioned a close-up of the teen with teased curls and iridescent eye shadow: “My niece Alaina Housley. I can’t believe I met her when she was five. She now is a Junior in high school doing a photo shoot with a 70’s theme. Kill it beauty. Good luck in all your future endeavors.”

Following the news of Alaina’s death, “The Real” tweeted condolences.

“We send all our love and our deepest condolences to the Housleys, our family, during this difficult time.”

Contributing: Ashley May, Cydney Henderson, Rick Jervis

More: What we know about the fatal mass shooting at a Thousand Oaks, California, dance bar

More: ‘He died a hero’: Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus among those killed in bar shooting


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