Belton, 88, succumbed to his injuries Thursday morning at Sacred Heart Medical
Witnesses say Belton was in the parking lot of the Eagles Lodge at 6410 N. Lidgerwood,
adjacent to the Eagles Ice-A-Rena, around 8 p.m. Wednesday when the two male suspects attacked him as he was about to head
inside to play pool.
Police responded with K-9s to track the suspects' scent but were not
able to locate them.
"It does appear random. He was in the parking lot,
it appears he was assaulted in the parking lot and there was no indication that he would have known these people prior to
the assault," Spokane Police Major Crimes Detective Lieutenant Mark Griffiths said.
died from his injuries Thursday morning at Sacred Heart Medical Center.
he was known by his friends at the Eagles Lodge, served in the U.S. Army in the Pacific during WWII and was shot in the leg
during the Battle of Okinawa. He went on to work at Kaiser Aluminum at the company's Trentwood plant for more than 30
years. Belton's wife passed away several years ago.
He loved playing pool, even though he
claimed he was no good at it and had been a member of the Eagles Lodge for the last four months. In addition to playing pool
he loved working on cars.
Shorty was Ted Denison's best friend of 23 years; the two played
pool occasionally and worked on cars daily.
"He was always there for me
when I needed him," Denison said. "We'd joke back and forth. We were always having fun, some sort of fun."
He was the kind of nice old man who'd become your friend in minutes.
"Probably every time I come into town, he'd have a project for me to do," Denison said. "I thought
of him more as a dad than I did a friend really."
Now, with the suspects
still at large and the Spokane Police Department working to track them down, Shorty's friends are hoping for justice.
"I don't understand how somebody could do this. I really don't," Denison
Spokane police are looking for two male suspects in the attack. They said the suspects are
African Americans between 16 and 19 years old. One suspect was described as heavy set and wearing all black clothing. The
other was described as being about 6 feet tall and 150 pounds. There was no description of what clothing the second suspect
was wearing other than a silk do-rag.
Police investigating the deadly attack on Belton have also
obtained surveillance footage from the scene.