(FOX11) - Born and raised in Lake Arrowhead, California Michael Wetzel, 37, was a father of 6 children in a blended family. Mother of three of his six children Amy Wetzel is heartbroken over the loss of his life.
"He had six kids that he took care of, those are the focus. Getting his wife, parents and his family through this, and those six kids and 14-years-old to two-years-old, who know him as daddy and aren’t going to have him any more, Amy said.
Michael Wetzel, who worked as an environmental specialist for San Bernardino County was one of the 14 killed when Syed Farook and his wife Tashfeen Malik burst into the Social Service Center and opened fire Wednesday.
Amy says she, his wife and his parents were frantically looking for him after hearing of the the shooting.
"His wife was down their looking for him, his mom was down there looking for them, going to evacuation centers and hospitals," Amy said, She says she called Michael's father after hearing he might have been brought to Loma Linda Hospital.
"When the phone call connected to his dad all he kept saying over and over again is 'he’s dead, he’s dead, he’s dead'," Amy said.
"It was probably the worst day of my life. Not knowing how to tell you kids. that daddy’s not coming home. trying to say it the right way, because I know how I heard it, and knowing that those words are going to be stuck forever in their brain. That was the hard part," Amy said.
Though divorced Amy says, that doesn't stop her from feeling the pain of his loss. The two met in college fell in love and were married for eight years.
"He's the father of my babies. We may not have always seen eye to eye, but he gave me three beautiful kids. He gave me eight years of married and lots of memories," Amy said. "When we met, he was the first guy that was raised right. that had good beliefs, that came from a good background and truly cared, he was a married.
At the time of his death, Michael was married to Renee Wetzel who brought two children to the relationship. Together, they had a baby girl.
Now, Amy tells FOX 11's Christine O'Donnell, the whole family is trying to understand why this happened to their dad.
"There is no way to wrap your mind around what happened. The fact that it was a co-worker, the fact that it was a Christmas party, the fact that minutes before they were laughing and taking pictures and just being with each other," Amy said.
Whether this was terrorism or revenge, Amy says nothing can justify this senseless act for her, his wife, parents and all six children.
"They’re still young, they need their daddy. There’s no words. There's nothing you can say that’s going to make anything better for them. Their whole world has been changed," Amy said.
Amy says in recent years, Michael had become very religious. She says that has brought the family comfort.
If you’d like to help the family out as the navigate through this difficult time there is a fundraiser set up by the Church of the Woods.
The proceeds will go to all six children and their mothers.