Six Months On, Friends And Families Of Aurora Shooting Victims Dedicate Memorial

Aug 16, 2019

Credit Guy Stephens

Six months to the day and even the hour since an employee of the Henry Pratt Company facility in Aurora shot and killed 5 people there, families of the victims and company employees gathered to dedicate a memorial to the fallen.

A public vigil held just after the shooting to honor Russell Beyer, Vicente Juarez, Clayton Parks, Josh Pinkard and Trevor Wehner drew a large media contingent and hundreds of people, despite freezing rain. By contrast, the August 15 ceremony, held at Pratt under a blazing sun and blue skies, was a small, almost private affair.   

A crowd of Pratt employees, wearing shirts with the words “PrattStrong” on them, encircled the families of the 5 men as they stood in front of a granite bench, set in a small, newly made garden. Inscribed with the names of the victims, it had a bouquet of flowers placed on it. One of the Aurora police officers who had been wounded by the gunman that day was there, too, standing off to one side.

After a few remarks, there was a period of silence marking the exact time of the deaths. Then family members put white roses they had been holding on the bench. A few words of thanks, and it was over. But everyone lingered for a long while after, exchanging hugs, words of condolence, and memories of those they had lost.