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GLAAD RELEASES STATEMENTS FROM SURVIVORS AND ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOR MEDIA COVERING THE DEADLY MASS SHOOTING IN COLORADO SPRINGS
- Last updated: May 24, 2023
GLAAD, the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization is releasing additional statements from survivors of the mass shooting in Colorado Springs and releasing additional resources for media.
GLAAD is coordinating with local advocates to support the survivors, and facilitate their stories for reporters covering the tragedy as respectfully and sensitively as possible.
GLAAD is also updating media to an important detail in the story of how the gunman was subdued on Saturday night by club patrons. GLAAD can confirm the person in heels who stepped on the gunman is a trans woman, not a drag performer. The woman has not come forward. Police announced last night that an additional patron, Thomas James, is credited with assisting Rich Fierro. James is recovering from injuries suffered during the shooting and is not available for interviews.
Photos of the people killed on Saturday night can be found here.
Their names and pronouns are: Kelly Loving (she/her), Daniel Aston (he/him); Derrick Rump (he/him); Ashley Paugh (she/her); and Raymond Green Vance (he/him).
Additional details here.
Their families continue to ask for privacy and space to grieve and heal.
Mark Slaugh’s family members Charlene and James remain in the hospital. Mark issued this statement through GLAAD:
“While my sister and brother remain in the hospital, we are asking everyone to continue their support of our family and the entire community here. The world is all looking at Club Q and standing with the community here. Our community needs that allyship now, but we also need it to continue for a long time to come.”
Mark has been updating friends and family via Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/440457514945033/?ref=share&mibextid=S66gvF
Mark’s friends have set up a GoFundMe account to help support the family and donate to off-set medical bills incurred: https://www.gofundme.com/f/medical-bills-for-charlene-slaugh
The Colorado Healing Fund has also been activated to support all survivors and families: go to www.coloradohealingfund.org and click on the “Support Colorado Healing Fund” button.
Ed Sanders was injured during the attack and will have surgery in the coming hours. He spoke out last night about how the community inside the club rallied to save lives.
“The shooting started and I got hit in the back. He fired another volley and I got hit in the leg, and then I went down. I could hear people calling for tourniquets. The lady next to me was shot pretty badly. We were trying to keep her breathing.”
Ed continued: “Club Q has been my home for twenty years. They are my family. I want people to just show some love to the LGBTQ people in their lives.”
Club Q owner Nic Grzecka spoke out last night:
“I am sad and scared about where this nation is going. What happened to us this weekend as a community is happening around the nation. These politics are tearing our gay communicates apart. You see what’s happening in New York with bricks thrown at bars. This is not good. This is not safe. Our politicians are helping drive this narrative and they can also help stop it.”
Club Q’s statement and other statements from local organizations can be found here.
Statement from Pikes Peak Pride
“Like the rest of our community across the nation, the event committee of Pikes Peak Pride has been shocked and heart-broken at the news of the horrific events that unfolded at our local bar and safe haven, Club Q. For many of us, Club Q has been a staple in our queer identities for years, a constant place of discovery and belonging. To have that sanctuary violated in this horrific, hateful manner is unspeakable. We are hurt. We don’t know how we move forward while missing some of the brightest lights in our community. But we will never stop fighting. We are NOT GOING AWAY!!! The fight will go on. TOGETHER! This is why we need Pride. To ensure everyone feels safe dancing, loving, and living exactly how they choose to be. We need Pride. And we will continue having Pride celebrations until no LGBTQ+ person has cause to be afraid again. But today, we must heal.” – Jessica Laney, Pikes Peak Pride
Media are also encouraged to connect with local advocates and leaders:
Local community members and leaders
- Gillian Ford (she/her), communications director of One Colorado. firstname.lastname@example.org / (303) 416-6893
- Pikes Peak Pride, Colorado Springs-based nonprofit volunteer-run LGBTQ organization
- Mary Lou Makepeace (she/her), former mayor of Colorado Springs 719-648-3864
- Blanca Leos (she/her), PFLAG’s regional director in Colorado: email@example.com, 720-485-0727
National/Regional Spokespeople who can speak to the epidemic of anti-LGBTQ hate and anti-LGBTQ rhetoric that is feuling attacks on our community
- Fran Hutchinson, Executive Director of Equality Federation (she/they), 413-923-8698 firstname.lastname@example.org, Equality Federation supports statewide LGBTQ organizations including One Colorado
- Jeremy Shaver, Senior Associate Regional Director for ADL’s (Anti Defamation League) Mountain States Region email@example.com 313-815-8159
- Statement from Club Q, who GLAAD has been supporting on the ground in Colorado Springs: /releases/statement-colorado-springs-club-q-mass-shooting
- Statement from GLAAD /releases/glaad-responds-tragic-mass-shooting-colorado-springs-lgbtq-nightclub
- And other statements and contexts from additional LGBTQ local and national organizations, and important perspectives like President Biden and other politicians: /releases/glaad-releases-statements-colorado-based-leaders-and-groups-announces-fund-established
- Statement from Pikes Peak Pride: https://www.instagram.com/p/ClP0qstMBow/
- GLAAD’s Media Reference Guide for Media: /reference
- Ed Sanders (left) – Photo courtesy of Ed Sanders
About GLAAD: GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBTQ acceptance. As a dynamic media force, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change. GLAAD protects all that has been accomplished and creates a world where everyone can live the life they love. For more information, please visit www.glaad.org or connect with GLAAD on Facebook and Twitter.
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