Memorial Plans Set Just One Year After Buffalo Supermarket Mass Shooting

Memorial Plans Set Just One Year After Buffalo Supermarket Mass Shooting

Moments of silence covered the city of Buffalo, New York, on May 14 as thousands gathered at the location of the mass shooting that shook the nation one year ago.

NBC News reports Buffalo made it through one year after a white supremacist gunman opened fire at a Tops Friendly Market, killing 10 people and injuring three more—because they were Black. To honor the victims, a memorial was held with moments of silence followed by church bell chimes at 2:28 p.m. To move forward, panelists of the community gathered last week to discuss how they can conquer racism and social media radicalization so things like this never happen again.

As the supermarket has since re-opened, memorial development has begun, according to Spectrum News. A water wall honoring the 10 victims is currently seen inside, but Buffalo Tops’ President, John Persons, says something needs to be done to make the space unrecognizable. “We as a company always knew that in the very beginning, the community used the corner of Jefferson Ave. and Landon as sort of a makeshift memorial spot,” Persons said. “It appeared to us that meant as the most permanent honorable space for the victims and to remember what happened that day.”

Tops said there has always been a plan in place to build a more permanent memorial in Buffalo where people can come, say a prayer, and show their support. Construction will begin next month.

Legislators have been supportive since the tragic day. Recently, President Joe Biden penned an op-ed for USA Today calling for Congress and state lawmakers to move on banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. He hopes to require background checks for all gun sales after his administration passed a landmark gun measure last June, shortly after a series of mass shootings. He reminisced on when he and first lady Jill Biden visited the site. “Jill and I visited both communities, spending hours with hundreds of family members who lost pieces of their soul and whose lives will never be the same,” Biden wrote.

“They had one message for all of us: Do something. For God’s sake, do something.”

The gunman, 19-year-old Payton Gendron, pleaded guilty to murder and terrorism charges. The judge overseeing the trial said Gendron deserved “no mercy” before sentencing him to life in prison without parole while the victim’s families were present.