AURORA, Colo. -- It’s a symbol of strength, courage and comfort that came out of the horror of 9/11.
Since then, the First Responder’s Bible has visited communities hit by catastrophes and tragedies.
On Saturday, it was Aurora’s turn.
”USA 9/11 First Responders” presented the “Responding Bible” to victims of the Aurora theater shootings.
“I was nervous being across from the theater where Veronica died,” says Heather Dearman, a cousin of victims Ashley and Veronica Moser.
It’s the first time the family of the two visited the growing and increasingly tattered memorial of dried flowers, faded messages, and dust-covered toys.
“It’s overwhelming to see everything over there for Veronica. It’s just beautiful. It brings a comfort and peace,” says Dearman, about the gifts brought to the deceased 6-year-old.
“We are now here to share the Bible with your community,” says Brittany Wood, executive director of USA 9/11 First Responders, who flew in from Florida to lead the prayer.
Moser’s family accepted a special Bible on behalf of the little girl, her injured mother, Ashley, and the other victims of the movie massacre.
“It has such power, I believe, because it has been to so many places and has comforted so many people when we get that energy together it’s just unbelievable,” says Wood.
The Bible first given to a first responder at 9/11 and now shared with people like
Veronica and Ashley’s family feels a special connection to police and firefighters.
“Ashley and our whole family is very thankful that Veronica was carried out of the theater and she didn’t have to be left in there as part of the crime scene…it was because of our first responders…Ashley was alive and we can see Veronica smile in Ashley’s eyes forever now,” says Dearman.
But now, Ashley must survive the aftermath as a paraplegic.
“She is going to have to relive her life in a different manner. And that’s what the future is for her, day by day,” says another relative.
It’s an uncertain future, but one with much prayer and support—even from strangers.
“I had to come by here,” says Mark Pete, who flew in from Houston for a wedding, but made a stop at the memorial.
“We’re here Oklahoma City to pay our respects to those families and lives lost,” says visitor Nancy Gerding.
Support is bolstered by a Bible—a godly reminder that our community—near and far—cares.
“I think it’s a symbol of healing, and that something so tragic could turn into something beautiful and good,” says Dearman.
The Bible will be shared with a few churches across the metro area over the new few weeks.
Ashley’s family says she’ll need a lot of financial help. They’ve created t-shirts they’ll sell on their website to benefit Ashley. You can help at www.helpash.org.AlertMe