COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KDVR) — A memorial for those killed in the mass shooting at an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs continues to grow as a community mourns.
Police said a 22-year-old gunman shot and killed five people with a semiautomatic rifle at Club Q late Saturday night. Twenty-five people were injured.
Serene Contreras told FOX31 she was devastated when she learned her friend was shot inside the club.
“I’m heartbroken, I am beyond tired of waking up every day to something like this, it’s traumatic,” she said.
Another visitor referred to the shootings as “disgusting.”
Casey Boniface told FOX31 her son’s friend was inside the club.
“I’m angry I’m sad I’ve been crying off and on all day,” she tearfully explained.
Like others at the memorial, Boniface was devastated to learn the club was targeted in what many believe was an incident motivated by hate.
“I have two sons who do not identify as straight, one of them is 21 and could’ve been at this club,” said Boniface.
A motive has not yet been identified by police in the case, which represents a tragic irony, this weekend marks the observance of the Transgender Day of Remembrance.
One Colorado Deputy Director Garrett Royer told FOX31, “it’s both a reminder that Transgender Day of Remembrance is still important and valid and something we need to continue recognizing, and we shouldn’t have to live in a world where this kind of attack in what is to be a safe space for the community happens against its own members.”
Royer says he believes anti-LGBTQ rhetoric is laying the groundwork for increased violence. Those gathered at the memorial say the immediate need is for love and support for the LGBTQ community.
“I love them and I’m here for them,” Contreras said.