While flags fly at half-staff and news feeds are filled with continuing coverage of the devastation caused in an Orlando, Fla., night club by one man armed with hatred, anger and an AR-15, in Centre County, some are reacting differently.
At 6 p.m., people will gather on the steps of Penn State’s Old Main to share their grief and show support with a “Stand in Solidarity” vigil. The event will include speakers and a moment of silence.
“At this time I think we are still in shock,” said Allison Subasic, of the university’s LGBTQ Student Resource Center, which organized the vigil.
Student organizer Brian Davis said he wanted to bring the Penn State community together around the tragedy, according to a university release.
The students are not the only ones feeling that pain.
Another vigil will be held at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Centre County at 780 Waupelani Drive Extension in State College.
Trustee Claudia Snyder called it “a prayer vigil for peace and tolerance for our brothers and sisters in Orlando.”
A separate community vigil is slated for 8 p.m. Tuesday at Penn State’s Allen Street gates.
The student resource center is also trying to provide as much comfort as possible to their community after the shooting at Pulse, a well-known Central Florida gay bar and dance club.
“I have posted some resources on our Facebook page,” Subasic said.
The university also responded.
“We are all deeply saddened by the atrocity in Orlando, and our hearts go out to the victims and their families. We join with the Penn State LGBTQ family in denouncing this senseless act of violence. As our community comes together in vigil at the steps of Old Main this evening, we stand together as one Penn State, committed to a vision of mutual respect and inclusion,” President Eric Barron said.