Video game competitors Eli “Trueboy” Clayton and Taylor “SpotMePlzzz” Robertson were killed after a gunman attacked an esports tournament in Jacksonville, Florida, on Sunday, according to local media reports.
Law enforcement officials confirmed the victims’ identities Monday after family members and friends began to speak out about their deaths online.
Competitors were participating in the southern qualifier of EA Sports’ “Madden 19” championship series, a video game football tournament, at the Jacksonville Landing shopping mall when a gunman opened fire, killing Clayton and Robertson, and injuring nine others. The suspect died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Two others were injured fleeing the scene.
Clayton, 22, was a frequent competitor at Madden events and was described by EA Sports as “consistently one of the best.” Clayton was entering the second round of the tournament when shots began to fire.
Shay Kivlen, the 2018 Madden Bowl Champion, posted a tribute to Clayton on Twitter, describing him as “one of my best friends in life.”
“You were one of the most kind and genuine people I’ve ever met,” Kivlen wrote. “I love u like a brother. I’m gonna miss hearing you laugh everyday and seeing your genuine smile.”
Asked in an April interview published by EA Sports what he wanted people to know about him, Clayton answered:
“I’m really easy to get along with, I’m not a troublemaker,” he said. “I’m always laughing and joking around. I’m just me, a cool dude. There’s really nowhere to go but up, honestly.”
Calabasas High School in Southern California identified Clayton as a former student and football player at the school.
“We send our love, condolences, and deepest sense of sorrow to Elijah’s family and friends,” the school’s football team said on Twitter.
Robertson, 27, of Ballard, West Virginia, was a former champion, having won the Madden 17 Classic tournament in 2016. EA Sports described Robertson, who won 72 percent of his matches, as one of the “toughest opponents in competitive Madden.”
The husband and father of a young son began playing Madden when he was 10 years old but only began playing competitively in recent years. He was excited to fly to Jacksonville, tweeting days earlier that it was “time to chase that second belt.”
Madden YouTuber Eric Rayweather tweeted that Robertson was always talking about his wife and their child and how he wanted the prize money “to better their lives.”
Robertson was remembered on social media as a Tennessee Titans fan, prompting the NFL team to express its condolences to him and his family.
Before becoming a competitive gamer, Robertson played football and basketball in high school and in 2007 was named football player of the year by the Pocahontas Coal Association and Bluefield Daily Telegraph, according to the local Daily Telegraph.
Hayley Miller contributed reporting.
This story has been updated with confirmation of the victims’ identities from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.