VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — For the one-year anniversary of the Virginia Beach mass shooting, community members paid their respects at the Forget-Me-Not memorial at Mt. Trashmore Park.
“You don’t forget something like that, it was very tragic,” explained Oswald Woodies.
People walking on Friday stopped to look and honor the victims. Many people said they will never forget May 31, 2019.
A community member said, “I remember turning on the news and I was in shock.”
A gunman shot and killed 12 people at the Virginia Beach Municipal Center. Dozens of others will never be the same. To this day, many people said they can’t believe it happened here.
Chris Williams said, “I definitely felt for them and I still feel for them to this day.”
On Friday, some visitors came to Mt. Trashmore to exercise, while others needed to sit and take it all in. They reflected on what city leaders call the saddest day in Virginia Beach history.
“I knew Pastor [Keith] Cox’s son. I didn’t hang out with him, but I knew who he was,” explained Woodies.
On the side of a hill, facing the interstate is a blue Forget-Me-Not flower. The 12 outer petals represent the lives we lost, four inner petals for the injured, and a blue dot in the middle is for the officer who was shot but saved by his vest.
Leighton Bailey said, “I see a symbol of something positive but also I see something that it brings back sadness to a lot of us and it’s also a reminder of what happened a year ago today.”
This year’s anniversary affects everyone in a different way, but community members say we can get through this tough time, together.
“VB Strong. So, we want to keep that in the back of our heads, in our hearts and in our minds. VB Strong,” explained Williams.
If you haven’t seen or visited the Mt. Trashmore Park memorial and want to, city leaders say it will stay up for a couple more weeks.