The MSU shooter’s father said his son had “his own world,” recalling what he last said to him

LANSING, Mich. (WOOD) – Four days after his son shot eight students at Michigan State University and killed three of them, Anthony McRae’s father is struggling for answers.

He doubts he’ll ever get any.

“I said, ‘Oh my God,'” he told Nexstar’s WOOD on Friday. “It’s like a dream, like I’m dreaming. It doesn’t seem real, man.”

Michael McRae has seen the photos of the three students who died at the hands of his son. Arielle Anderson, Brian Fraser and Alexandria Verner’s families prepare for funerals.

“God bless the families,” said Michael McRae.

It’s difficult for a father to blame his own son for something so terrible, so he blames evil and the devil.

“It hurts. My son’s dead too. Everyone’s dead,” he said. “What he did, bless his soul, man, but we don’t know. Every day is a different day.”

Michael McRae spoke to WOOD over the phone and said he didn’t want his face shown.

“My son did it, not me. I don’t want to be in front of the camera,” he said. He’s worried that someone might point at him and say, “‘There goes the guy’s father, we’re going to kill him,'” he said.

Michael McRae says he last saw his son on Monday morning, just over 10 hours before the shooting, and said he had no idea what was about to happen. His 43-year-old son lived with him in a tiny house down a cul-de-sac in Lansing, about 10 minutes from campus and just blocks from his suicide site.

“I raised my children in the church. So what happened to Anthony, what he did, I have no control over that. At all,” he said.

Michael McRae said his son lost his driver’s license so he walked, biked or took the bus when he went out. But mostly, he said, his son just sat in his bedroom and played video games.

“He lived a private life,” he said. “He was antisocial. He didn’t want to be around people. He was a good boy, but he had his own world.”

He said his son has become morose since his mother died in 2020.

“Sometimes people just can’t handle the pressure. mom died He’s changed since mom died. That’s all I can say man,” he said.

The last words he spoke to his son: Go out and get a job.

“(They) can’t stay at home and play Nintendo games in this room all day, play Nintendo games in this room all day,” he said. “I said go out, get some air or something, get out of the room, get on the bus and get a job, man. Work. Come on, you can’t just sit in the room and be a turtle.”

Anthony McRae had no history of violent crime. In 2019, he pled guilty to a high misdemeanor plea deal following his arrest for carrying a concealed weapon not far from his home. Police said he legally purchased the two 9mm handguns he armed with on Monday, although he did not register them. Authorities still have not determined a motive, although they did find notes in McRae’s pockets that suggested he felt offended by people or companies.

“You don’t know what’s going on in his head,” said Michael McRae when asked what made his son go nuts. “I’m shocked too, man. Do you think I’m not hurt? What he did?

“He knew right from wrong, but he went out and did something that got out of hand,” he continued. “And it hurts. But what can we do, man, when your kid goes out and turns into a monster?

“All I can say is God bless everyone. It’s a nightmare, but God knows we never know what your child will be up to.”

Michael McRae added that he is waiting for the hospital to give his son’s body to a funeral home so they can make arrangements for his son’s burial. The MSU shooter’s father said his son had “his own world,” recalling what he last said to him

Dais Johnston

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