Communicating feelings: CU student, shooting survivor returns to memorial each day to play cello

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BOULDER, Colo. (KDVR) — Three days after 10 people were killed at a Boulder King Soopers, the memorial outside the grocery store continues to grow.

Flowers, candles, notes, and other mementos line Table Mesa Drive – resting on a fence surrounding the grocery store.

Louis Saxton was inside buying fruit and juice on Monday when he started hearing shots.

“Some guy came in and was yelling at me to run, so I dropped my bag and ran,” Saxton said. “I had one goal, and that was to get out, as fast as I could.”

Saxton, a freshman at CU-Boulder, says he barely slept Monday night. His mind kept returning to the scene, and the thought of how lucky he was to escape.

“I just spent so much time just breaking down in my room,” Saxton said. “I knew I needed to do something, because I felt so fortunate to have made it out of there.”

On Tuesday, the cello performance major returned to the scene with his instrument in hand and began to play. Within minutes – a crowd started to gather around his creation.

“Music is one of those really rare universal languages,” Saxton said. “I feel like it’s a way to communicate to people feelings, rather than words.”

Thomas Heinrich, who plays cello in the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, stumbled upon the performance while bringing flowers to the scene Thursday.

“He played beautifully, it’s good for the soul, good for the heart,” said Heinrich. “I think that’s kind of the wonderful thing about music, is it expresses things that words can’t.”

Saxton has returned every day to play his cello, and plans on playing for 10 straight days, to honor the 10 victims who died.

“I’m just doing what I can to help people grieve,” Saxton said. “It’s for the people who were not as lucky as me.”

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