Local

Mourners gather in Aurora to remember shooting victims

Sunday, July 22, 2012

People from across the country are gathering in Colorado to honor the victims who lost their lives on Friday.

Hundreds if not thousands of people have passed through over the weekend to mourn those who were killed in the shooting in Aurora.

Action News talked with a man who traveled there from Illinois to place white crosses at a memorial. This isn't the first time he's done this in Colorado.

Greg Zanis traveled more than a thousand miles to Aurora just to place memorial crosses at a site across the street from the Century 16 Theater.

"That's why I come here, because I want to help these people grieve," Zanis said.

Zanis made each of the 12 crosses, one for each of the victims who lost their lives in the massacre on Friday.

"The whole nation is looking at us here, but we want to do something positive. It's too early to forgive, don't say I said that. We want to grieve, we want to have our anger. But we don't want anybody to be forgotten. Not one single family member to be forgotten," Zanis said.

As Zanis placed the crosses on the dirt hill, Anita Mayorga asked him to walk with her to lay a bouquet of flowers next to them.

"It was emotional, however we have to support each other and stay strong as a community. I asked the gentleman to pray for the victims and the families. The community is struggling with this," Mayorga said.

The memorial site has grown over the past three days. There are personalized notes, pictures and prayer candles.

This is not the first time Zanis has paid tribute to victims of Colorado tragedies.

In 1999 he placed crosses at a memorial site for the victims of the Columbine High School shooting. That site is just a few miles from the Aurora Theater.

"Just to see this happen again, this massacre. Just think of what's going through my mind. 12 Here and 15 across town. Just a few miles," Zanis said. "I just think it's important that we remember both."

Zanis just hopes his efforts help Colorado residents heal.

Mourners are also spending the evening just a few blocks from here at a community prayer vigil where Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and other Aurora officials will meet to console one another.

(Copyright ©2014 KFSN-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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colorado, local, rick montanez
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