AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – Friday marked six years since the mass shooting at a movie theater in Aurora, and at midnight dozens of people came together to remember those killed and those wounded in the attack.
Twelve people died on July 20, 2012, when a gunman opened fire during the midnight showing of “The Dark Knight Rises.” A total of 70 others were injured and countless lives were changed.
“I still feel numb on this day,” explained Kaylan Bailey, who was in the theater that night. Bailey lost her soon-to-be cousin in the shooting, 6-year-old Veronica Moser-Sullivan.
“A lot of memories and pictures of the events that played out really are stuck in my brain this year,” Bailey said.
At midnight, the community gathered to reflect and pay tribute to the shooting victims. The vigil was held at the new memorial site near the Aurora Municipal Building.
“This memorial gave us something to push towards and look forward to,” Bailey said. “It has helped with healing.”
People gathered to light candles, say a prayer and reflect. The friends and families of victims said the vigil is a reminder that nobody has to grieve alone.
“To have people come together to have a shoulder to cry on because they feel the same way you do is good,” explained Joshua Stanley, who lost a friend in the shooting in 2012. “They’ve experienced the same amount of loss and grief and pain that July 20, 2012 put on everyone in the community.”
The Aurora Police Department also held its “Never Forget” processional along Alameda Avenue, passing by the theater where the shooting took place. As the officers who were called to the scene that night showed up to the vigil, the crowd erupted in cheers.
The official dedication of the 7/20 memorial will take place on July 27 in a ceremony that is open to the public.