“Quiet givers.” Couple killed in Watauga County shooting laid to rest

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BOONE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – On Saturday, two victims in the Watauga County shooting were laid to rest in a private memorial service.

George and Michelle Ligion were killed last month by Michelle’s son Isaac Barnes. The 32-year-old Barnes also gunned down two Watauga County deputies and was found dead after a 13-hour standoff.

“George and Michelle were quiet givers,” Ligon’s pastor said during the service.

Their friends known them as a compassionate couple. Never the center of attention, but always performing acts of kindness for others.

“George once made a New Year’s resolution that he would try to make 100 people smile every day and that’s because the previous year he said he was only going to make 75 people smile every day,” the pastor said. “And that was too easy.”

George will be remembered for his big smile and his warm heart. Michelle for her infectious laugh. Family members say she loved the mountains, so much that she and George made the quiet town of Boone their home.

“They fell in love with each other 17 years ago, and this August, they would have celebrated 15 years of marriage.”

But no-one, not family, friends or the Ligons were supposed to be here today. The tragic events that led to their death and that of two Watauga deputies will forever haunt this community.

“George and Michelle welcomed Isaac home when it was clear that he was struggling mightily with mental illness,” she said. “They loved him and tried to get him the help he needed.”

Their pastor says they gave quietly, trying to help Michelle’s son. It’s how they always lived their dash. Selflessly helping others the way God would have wanted.

“May we take comfort knowing that as God welcomed George and Michelle home, there was joy in the heart of God who responded, ‘well done,'” the pastor said. “Well done quiet givers, my good and faithful servants.'”

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