‘He was my soulmate’ - widow looks to future, remembers late husband

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Noelle Shull holds a favorite photo of her late husband, Neal, close to the one-year anniversary of his death. Kyle Lewis / Times-Post

Noelle Shull, whose husband Neal was shot and killed last July, talks about the recovery from his "devastating" death during a recent interview in her home. Kyle Lewis / Times-Post

Pendleton - Last July 26, Noelle Shull was waiting for her husband to return home when she thought she heard neighborhood children setting off fireworks a few blocks away. Little did she know those rapid bursts of noise would alter her life forever, ending the life of the person she loved most.

Her husband, Neal Shull, 48, was gunned down late that night by Kenneth James Bailey, 58, of New Castle, after a confrontation between Bailey and his estranged wife. Neal apparently happened upon the fight in the street between the Baileys as he was on his way home around 11 p.m. When he stopped to ask the woman if she needed assistance, Bailey opened fire.

After a tense, night-long manhunt that began after Bailey fired at responding officers – injuring two and killing a police dog – he fled. Officers found him at sunrise the next morning behind a garage. He had killed himself.

Since that terrible night, Noelle has tried to put her life back together.

“Things have been hard without him,” she said. “I miss him like crazy. He was my soulmate.”

Neal was slain in front of a house at 318 Water St. The Shulls were staying just around the corner at 127 N. John St. at the time, renting a friend’s place as they were improving their dream home outside town.

The dream, of course, was shattered that hot night.

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