A museum and monument in tribute to the 49 victims of the 2016 shooting in a gay bar in Orlando (Florida) was unveiled today with the presence of survivors, relatives of victims and local government officials.
With the inauguration, Barbara Poma, owner of the old Pulse bar, opened again the doors of the place to the public, which had been closed since the day of the massacre, during a Latin party held on June 12, 2016.
“It is our legacy for all future generations, and it will take us all to do things well,” said Poma during the ceremony.
This “sanctuary of reflection and love”, in charge of the onePULSE Foundation, consists of large gardens, a wall with the names of the 49 victims recorded, and a wall to leave offerings and flowers.
It also includes areas that remember the shooting, such as holes in the walls that authorities made to rescue those who hid in a bathroom.
The building is surrounded by panels full of photographs that show the global response of solidarity before the tragedy, the vigils in honor of the dead, as well as artifacts compiled by the Orange County History Center.
Poma paid tribute to the dead, the survivors, their families, the community leaders of Orlando, as well as the members of the foundation, which, he said, have become his “family.”
The Foundation, which works on the design of the permanent monument, noted that the old bar is now a special place not only for the history of central Florida, but for the history of the entire country.
On the night of June 12, 29-year-old American-born Omar Mateen entered the Pulse nightclub and fired an assault rifle at the locals, where a Latin party was being held.