Sikh whose brother shot, killed following 9-11 providing support for temple families

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GREENFIELD -- At the Greenfield home of one of six victims of Sunday's shooting at the Sikh Temple in Oak Creek -- temple president and founder Satwant Singh Kaleka, mourners have come to show support and grieve.

Amardeep Kaleka -- Satwant's son, is helping to plan funeral arrangements.

Funerals for all six victims will be held Friday, August 10th at Oak Creek High School's gymnasium.

Mourning should be spread. It shouldn't just rest with one person. When it sits with one person it traumatizes them, but if you have multiple people to deal with it to help you, and joke with you about a funny thing the person you lost did it helps," Amardeep said.

Sikh tradition dictates cremation, and Amardeep's son will go to India to spread Satwant's ashes in a river there.

Harjit Singh Sodhi does not know any Oak Creek victims personally. He came from Phoenix, Arizona to grieve with them. A few days after 9-11, Sodhi's brother, Balbir Singh Sodhi was gunned down while planting flowers in front of his Phoenix gas station. The man responsible said he was a patriot, and is now serving life in prison.

 Balbir Singh Sodhi

Balbir Singh Sodhi

Sodhi says those who wear turbans are not terrorists.

"I tried to stop the innocent people not get killed anymore. It happens continuously. Why to Sikhs? Look at September 11th -- how many Sikhs was victims of crimes. Why? Because we wear turbans.  It's not acceptable. I left my country in 1985 because there is no respect for human life there. I saw in 1984 what happened there. I want to bring my children here and grow up in a nice place," Sodhi said.

Satwant had the same dreams -- leaving India for America. At his home in Greenfield, his American flag still stands in the front yard -- this day, at half staff in his memory.

Friday's ceremony for the six Sikh Temple shooting victims will be held at Oak Creek High School's gymnasium from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers for Friday's funeral services, Sikh community members are asked that donations be made to victims' families.

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