OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – Oklahomans have been pouring out their support for the family of Oklahoma Labor Commissioner Mark Costello.
Costello, 59, was stabbed to death Sunday evening after meeting with his son at a Braum’s store in northwest Oklahoma City.
Christian Costello was arrested after witnesses subdued him following the attack, holding him until the police arrived.
Oklahoma City Police stated on Monday that their investigation continues and have interviewed over a dozen people at the scene.
Investigators say that the father and son had agreed to meet at the restaurant when, for some reason, things got violent.
Mark Costello was stabbed multiple times.
Many colleagues from across the state have issued their condolences.
“My family is stunned and deeply grieved to hear of the tragic death of Labor Commissioner Mark Costello. Mark was passionate about our nation, conservative fiscal principles, and the people of our state. Mark was a friend, and as we grieve, we will also pray for his family as they deal with this unbelievable tragedy.” U.S. Senator James Lankford.
Congressman Jim Bridenstine, (R-OK-1) said, “My wife and I are devastated by the loss of our friend, Mark Costello. He was principled servant, deeply committed to his faith and to Oklahoma. Our prayers are with Cathy and the Costello family.”
“Cindy and I, along with all of Oklahoma, grieve. Our hearts and prayers go out to Kathy in this most difficult of times. We love them and ask for God’s special comfort.” Congressman Steve Russell, (R-OK-5)
Oklahoma Republican Party Chairman Randy Brogdon stated, “Mark Costello was a dear friend and tonight’s news has left me speechless.
“While this news is heartbreaking, please join me in praying for the family of my friend. More than anything right now they need prayer warriors at their side.
“Mark, you will be missed.”
Commissioner Costello had come out early and endorsed Governor Scott Walker for President. The Governor had issued his condolences on Twitter saying, “We offer our sincere condolences to friends & family of OK Labor Commissioner Mark Costello. Tonette & I are praying for his loved ones.”
Governor Mary Fallin said, “I was shocked and greatly saddened to hear of Labor Commissioner Mark Costello’s tragic death last night. My prayers and deepest sympathies go out to his family, friends and staff. Oklahoma has lost a dedicated public servant and a good man.
“In honor of Mark’s life and his service to the state, all flags on state property will be flown at half-staff through the end of the week.”
The Costello family have released a statement as well:
“There are no words to express the shock and sadness that our family has experienced the last number of hours. The outpouring of emotion and support our family feels is tremendous.
“Our son, Christian Costello, has experienced many difficulties over the past several years. Christian, like thousands of Oklahomans, struggles with a mental health disease and like many families we did our best to support him. Mark was committed to being there for his son and provided whatever help he could as a father.
“We ask for your prayers and support as our family tries to cope with and understand this life-changing tragedy.
“Mark loved to brag about his kids and their successes, but like many in the public eye, he also viewed his family life as personal.
“We ask that you respect our family’s privacy as we work through this very difficult time and please understand that our family will struggle with this for years to come as we try and find answers.”
Costello was born in Bartlesville.
He is survived by his wife Cathy and five children.
His friends say he hoped to run for higher office.
It’ll be up to Fallin to appoint a new labor commissioner, and that person will finish Costello’s term through 2019.
Services for Mark Costello have been set for Saturday.
The rosary will be Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. at St. Monica Catholic Church, 2001 N. Western Ave, Edmond.
The funeral mass will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday also at St. Monica Catholic Church.