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Kansas City Mourns Victims of Parade Shooting, Calls for Action and Support

A Candlelight Gathering Fosters Community and Encourages Action
A+large+crowd+gathered+outside+of+Childrens+Mercy+Hospital+to+show+solidarity+with+the+victims.+
Brenna Oxley
A large crowd gathered outside of Children’s Mercy Hospital to show solidarity with the victims.

  Hundreds of community members lit candles Thursday evening in Kansas City to honor the victims of the Chiefs’ Super Bowl parade shooting. 

  The community mourned Lisa Lopez-Galvan’s death outside of Children’s Mercy Hospital, where several injured children from the event are currently being treated.

  “Lisa lit up the room the moment she walked in,” said Alyssa Roush, a friend of Lopez-Galvan. “She was always ready to have a good time. She treated everyone like family. Her energy and laughter were contagious.” 

  Lopez-Galvan was a co-host on the KKFI radio show “A Taste of Tejano” and often DJ-ed at Mr. P’z Bar & Grill in KC. 

  Her friend, Christina Nunez, said Lopez-Galvan was a large part of the Hispanic and Kansas City community. 

  Police say that 22 others were shot at the parade, many of whom were children.

The wind blew some candles out, but attendees were quick to relight their flames. (Brenna Oxley )

  “For many, what they experienced yesterday is, unfortunately, a way of life for them every single day,” said Rev. Darren Faulkner, the program manager for a local nonprofit, KC Common Good. “We want to make sure that does not continue to be the case.” 

  The tragedy called Missouri’s gun laws into question as two minors are in custody for the shooting.  

  “Prayers, yes, but let’s take action. There has to be some legislative change with guns,” said COMBAT KC President Vince Ortega. Jackson County’s COMBAT Commission works to fund treatment programs that prevent rates of crime and substance abuse.

  During the vigil, gusts of wind frequently threatened the flames on attendees’ candles. People shielded their lights from the wind, and several offered to relight the candles of those who had gone out. 

  “When you start dealing with your traumas, this is how you protect your light,” said Kyle Hollins, CEO of Kansas City nonprofit organization, Lyrik. “What happened yesterday was that somebody’s traumas, struggles, and heartaches that weren’t dealt with became something that everybody had to see.” 

  Lyrik works to decrease violence and crime rates through cognitive behavioral therapy. 

  Rev. Faulkner stressed the availability of mental health services as well as the importance of calling the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline in times of need. He invited all community members to weekly meetings at Rockhurst University to discuss solutions for violence in the city. 

  Mayor Pro Tem Ryana Parks-Shaw of Kansas City acknowledged the first responders and fellow civilians who ran into the face of danger to help. She urged counseling and therapy organizations to reach out and assist victims of the tragedy. 

  UMKC students can find ways to help the victims of the incident here. 

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