UPDATED 1:34 PM PT – Friday, October 1, 2021
Friday marks four years since the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history where a single gunman opened fire upon concert goers on the Las Vegas Strip, killing 60 people. The Route 91 remembrance events commenced at sunrise in Las Vegas on Friday at the Clark County Government Center. Sheriff Joe Lombardo officiated the event.
“As we gather to remember the events of 1 October, let’s remember back to the days after 1 October when we all became Vegas Strong. Those words were not just part of slogan in those days and weeks following the shooting, we became one as a community,” said Lombardo to the crowd. “We focused on helping each other through a tragedy that at that time seemed almost unbelievable.”
Clark County Commissioner Marilyn Kirkpatrick remarked how even though it has now been four years since the community endured that tragic day, it doesn’t make it any easier.
“As time marches on, it won’t be any less important. It will become part of our history, part of what we can learn from and we will constantly be continuing to heal those folks that were impacted on that day,” she said.
Today, I ordered the flags to be lowered to half-staff in honor & remembrance of the lives lost in the tragic shooting that occurred in Las Vegas on October 1, 2017. pic.twitter.com/YiX51JPRf8
— Governor Sisolak (@GovSisolak) September 30, 2021
Commissioner Kirkpatrick announced that MGM has donated the land where the Route 91 Festival was held on which to build the October 1 Memorial.
Dee Ann Hyatt attended the concert with six family members that night. Her brother, Kurt Von Tillow, was killed in the massacre. She said in the last four years, she’s learned some things just can’t be fixed.
“All you can do is be there for each other, listen, cry, hug, love and support one another. It’s hard to understand any person no matter how close they are to you,” said Hyatt. “It’s hard to understand any person, what they go through, and it reminds you that you need to be patient and loving and caring to everyone you meet because you don’t know what they are going through.”
The outpouring of support from perfect strangers from all across the country who reached out to her family has made her realize the good in people and that was life-changing. She concluded by quoting a country song by Old Dominion, saying “life is short, so make it sweet.”
A number of blood drives and commemoration gatherings are slated to be held in and around Las Vegas and Southern California throughout the weekend.