A University of Texas graduate was among 14 people killed in a terrorist attack in Nairobi, Kenya on Tuesday afternoon, according to the U.S. Department of State.
Jason Spindler was at the luxury hotel complex Dusit D2 when a gunman opened fire, the Associated Press reported. Authorities said at least four armed men were involved in the attack. According to the AP, the extremist group Al-Shabab claimed responsibility via its radio arm.
Spindler, a Houston native, graduated from UT in 2000 after studying economics and finance, according to his LinkedIn and Facebook profiles. He was the co-founder and managing director of I-Dev International, a company that helps build businesses globally, and had lived in Nairobi for the past three years, according to his Facebook profile.
We are saddened about the death of Jason Spindler who was killed in the Kenyan terror attack this week. Jason was a #McCombs Finance graduate. Our hearts and prayers are with his family and loved ones. pic.twitter.com/3d73XQOuHF— Texas McCombs (@UTexasMcCombs) January 16, 2019
“It’s with a heavy heat that I have to report that my brother, Jason Spindler passed away this morning during a terror attack in Nairobi, Kenya. Jason was a survivor of 9-11 and a fighter. I am sure he gave them hell,” Spindler’s brother, Jonathan, wrote in a Facebook post.
A former Peace Corps volunteer, Spindler’s parents say he was a man who lived his life helping others, according to ABC News. ABC News reported that his parents are going to Nairobi to bring his body home.
A State Department official condemned the attack as a “senseless act of violence.” The official said the American embassy in Nairobi is closely monitoring the attack, and State Department officials have offered help to local authorities in a statement to ABC News.
Early Wednesday, Kenyan authorities said all buildings were secured and the operation to neutralize the attack was over. Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta said the attackers had been killed, according to the AP.