OKLAHOMA CITY -- Patrick Sherrill was a strange and quiet man who kept to himself, except for run-ins with teenagers who teased him and called him 'Crazy Pat,' neighbors said Wednesday.
'He was a very strange person,' said Delores Coleman, a resident of the aging neighborhood of small frame houses in northwest Oklahoma City. 'He stayed to himself and he wasn't neighborly or friendly. I never saw him smile or laugh.'
Sherill, 44, upset about the prospects of losing his job as a mailman, went into a post office in the Oklahoma City suburb of Edmond Wednesday and opened fire with three pistols. He killed 14 people and wounded seven before committing suicide.
Coleman said the only time she spoke with the reclusive Marine veteran was several years ago when he confronted teenagers heckling him as he rode by on his bike.
'All of the kids made fun of him,' she said. 'They called him 'Crazy Pat.''
She said Sherrill grabbed one of the youths who was sitting on a car and tossed him onto the lawn.
'He said they were teasing him,' she said. 'Those were the only words I had with him. I told him to leave.'
In another incident, Coleman said a young neighbor ran inside her house shouting, 'Pat's after me.'
'Pat came up there and threw my front door open and said he was going to take care of him,' she said.
Sherrill left after Coleman's husband confronted him, she said.
Other than those incidents, Coleman said the balding Sherrill kept mostly to himself. He lived with his mother until she died years ago.
The only time Coleman said she would see Sherrill was when he was in his yard, on his bicycle or on the porch of an elderly woman who lived next door.
'He used to ride his bike all hours of the day and night,' Coleman said.
Sherrill also would keep busy working on ham radio equipment that litters a junk-filled garage in the back of the home he inherited.
Three large radio antennas rise above the small house that is covered with peeling white paint and topped with pink shingles. The lawn had not been mowed in weeks.
Joanna Newcomb said she met Sherrill only once in the 10 years she has lived in the neighborhood. That was when she had a yard sale.
'He came back there and introduced himself,' she said. 'He seemed all right.'
A man who lived on the next block said he did some welding repairs on part of an old swingset in Sherrill's backyard and loaned him some tools. He said he was shocked to hear what Sherrill did.
'That was Pat? Jesus Christ, I never would have thought that about him,' said the resident who asked not to be identified.
'It was hard to carry on a nice, fluent conversation with him,' he said. 'It seemed like he didn't quite think like everybody else does. He was an odd guy.'