RICE LAKE, Wis. – Mourners gathered at a funeral parlor on Thanksgiving Day (search) to remember one of six deer hunters killed in a shooting in Wisconsin's northwoods last weekend.
Friends and hunting buddies described 28-year-old Mark Roidt (search) as a friendly, outgoing man, a jack-of-all-trades in carpentry and construction work who loved hunting, motorcycling and other motorsports.
"He's just a warm-hearted, good-spirited guy," said Sarah O'Donnell, who knew Roidt for 12 years.
It was the first visitation to be held for a victim of Sunday's shooting. Roidt's funeral was scheduled for Friday, with funerals for the others to be held Saturday or next week.
Authorities said the six were killed and two others wounded after a confrontation with a hunter from Minnesota who was trespassing on private land. Chai Vang (search), 36, remains held on $2.5 million bail pending formal charges.
Court records show that Vang, an immigrant from Laos, told authorities that the hunters surrounded him and used racial slurs before one fired a shot at him. One of the survivors gave a different account, saying Vang started shooting first.
The Rev. David Oberts, who will preside over Roidt's funeral, said he usually would spend part of this week deer hunting but instead has been consoling families and planning funerals.
All of the slain hunters were from the Rice Lake area. Because the community is so close-knit, many people will be attending multiple funerals.
"I'm still working out a message," Oberts said. "In many ways, we're all still in the shock stage."