TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) -- As a man prepared to kill his professors and
himself, he mailed a letter to a newspaper publisher in the apparent
hope that he could explain his rampage.
"Greetings from the dead," began Robert Flores' suicide note, sent to
the Arizona Daily Star. "You have received this letter after a rather
Flores fatally shot three of his instructors and then committed
suicide at the University of Arizona on Monday.
The 22-page letter was accompanied by college transcripts, military
evaluations, recommendations from employers and two birthday cards,
the Star reported Wednesday.
In his letter, Flores sketches his failed marriage, poor health and
the slights he perceived from a nursing school he claimed treated
male students as "tokens."
Flores' depression and hopelessness permeates the text, which
mentions two victims by name and two other university staffers who
were not hurt.
The letter suggests Flores was driven by his recent failures at
school and home and felt that only his Great Dane loved him
It appears Flores wrote the letter in two stages separated by several
weeks, with all but the first two pages written on the eve of his
"Tonight is my last night on this planet so I guess I will finish
this letter," he wrote.
The Star offered copies of Flores' package to the three victims'
families, all of whom declined to comment on its contents Tuesday
night. Cheryl McGaffic's husband did not accept the materials, while
families of Barbara Monroe and Robin Rogers did.
The package, postmarked Monday, was delivered to the Star newsroom
Shortly after receiving the package, Star editors called Tucson
police, who reviewed the contents Tuesday night. Police said they
found no other suicide note from Flores.
Flores recognized the world would soon be questioning his motives,
and tried to ward off speculation on his motives.
"To the sociologist, it wasn't the Maryland sniper," he wrote. "I
have been thinking about this for awhile."
"To the psychiatrist," he wrote, "it's not about unresolved childhood
issues. It is not about anger because I don't feel anything right
Flores said his rampage wasn't about revenge, but he did try to
justify the shooting.
"The University is filled with too many people who are filled with
hubris. They feel untouchable. Students are not given respect nor
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University President Peter Likins said he was saddened by the brief
excepts he had heard. He said the letter provided some insight into
"When people do horrible things, and this man did a horrible thing,
we always ask ourselves after the fact, 'What could have been on his
mind? What could he have possibly been thinking? How could he justify
such atrocities in his own mind or was he so deranged he wasn't
thinking at all?"' Likins said.