Sister remembers Missy Langer, Virginia Beach mass shooting victim, nearly two years later

Virginia Beach Strong: Remembering Michelle "Missy" Langer
Posted at 1:13 PM, May 26, 2021

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Any sense of normalcy went out the window for Debbie Borato onMay 31, 2019.

"It is hard to get out of bed. I am not the same person I used to be, and I want to be normal again," she told News 3.

Her sister, Missy Langer, was brutally murdered inside Building 2 of the municipal center in Virginia Beach.

"He shot her in the back of her head within two feet," said Borato.

Missy died instantly. Eleven other employees died alongside Missy that day.

Missy Langer.png
Missy Langer

Missy had worked for the city as an administrative assistant for 12 years for a workplace she described as toxic to her sister during their daily phone calls.

"She was belittled. She was tormented. She was humiliated in front of other employees," said Borato.

Borato begged her sister to leave her job, but at age 60, she needed a stable income.

"There were things going on inside the city. They think they are hiding it all," Borato explained.

Borato and other family members remain steadfast that the shooter had a motive, even as the city claims one was not found in their final investigative report.

Related: Points of reflection, virtual ceremony planned for 2-year remembrance of Virginia Beach mass shooting

"They know what the motive is, and that is the shooter's immediate supervisor pushed him over the edge," Borato stated.

Her mood as the two-year anniversary approaches is anger, hurt and pain.

"It's like another slap in the face," she said,

She says she has trouble understanding why a permanent memorial is not yet built to remember the lives lost.

"It's been too long. Until they show honor to those victims - not just Virginia Beach - I won't be satisfied," she said,

Borato is considering filing a wrongful death lawsuit against the city she believes is hiding the truth.

"I am going to do whatever it takes to bring them down," she said Wednesday.

From Florida on Monday, she says she will privately memorialize Missy, a sister she said loved life, laughing, the Pittsburgh Steelers and her beloved Beatles.

"At 4 p.m., I will throw some flowers into the water, talk to her and say I am sorry for what the city did to her and pray that justice will prevail," she said.

The City of Virginia Beach has created a 5-31 Memorial Committee and has hired two consultants to work on the permanent memorial project at a cost of $115,000. They plan to update the process next month.

Click here for our full coverage on the Virginia Beach mass shooting.