The deadly tragedy of One October and the community of Las Vegas coming together will remain as a part of history. While the shootings and its aftermath will continue to affect those involved for decades, the world witnessed the strength of the community of Las Vegas. Known as Sin City as well as for its hospitality as a premier destination, the people of Southern Nevada demonstrated that they can rise to any crisis. The amazing display of humanity was witnessed as the women and men who call Las Vegas home served the wounded, honored the deceased and comforted the families and friends. Millions of dollars was raised, galloons of blood were donated and the outpouring of hope and healing continues.
Thousands of people attended the opening of the Las Vegas Healing Garden and Remembrance Wall during First Friday in October. The crowds have grown at other events, which celebrates the spirit of Las Vegas. There has been record-breaking attendance at various conventions. People have realized that the community of Las Vegas comes together and will continue to host visitors from around the world.
Las Vegas Woman magazine celebrates the spirit of Southern Nevada and those who truly make it #VegasStrong. Literally thousands of people contributed during this trying time. Each was involved in different ways and still continues to reach out. While the news cycle might report on other events, all of us will continue to stand #VegasStrong.
A voice of reason
While Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman represents the city with dignity, grace and humor in the spotlight, the glare became intense right after One October. She turned the unforgiving light into a shining star that is Las Vegas. This included speaking with the national and international media, greeting President Trump and Vice President Pence and attending memorials for victims. Las Vegas Healing Garden and Remembrance Wall was put together in four days and Mayor Goodman was there to speak and cut the ribbon during an emotional First Friday.
She gives enormous credit to “heroes on site demonstrating their selflessness and taking enormous risks to their own safety, including those who lost their lives. Our faith-initiative groups and religious leaders got out there immediately, going to the hospitals and going to the site to give comfort and help.”
Immediately after receiving notice about the events unfolding during the Route 91 Harvest festival, she called Sheriff Joe Lombardo and they decided that she should go to University Medical Center trauma unit. Mayor Goodman was able to reach out to the wounded as well as the family and friends of survivors and victims who died.
She knew what her role should be during this event. As Mayor Goodman explained, all mayors, especially since 9-11, participate in the Federal Emergency Management Agency program for one week. Mayor Goodman attended when she was first elected and everyone continues to train. Participants include law enforcement, Red Cross, social services support systems, faith initiatives, hotel security and hospital staff members as well. Every imaginable emergency situation is discussed and then everyone practices what to do if it becomes reality. As mayor, she learned to operate in crisis situations and disasters including natural or man-made.
“We continually practice in Southern Nevada so when this happened, I knew what to do,” she stated. “Safety is No. 1, everyone involved is well trained and it worked. This is the safest city in the country, if not the world. Fear will not control us.”
As Mayor Goodman explained, the Route 91 Harvest festival represented a healthy America celebrating its best through country music. Las Vegas is one of the most diverse communities in the nation including socio-economics, cultural, nationalities, generations, religions, race and languages. “We enjoy our diversity here and to see everyone pulling together was miraculous and so inspiring. We have a unique group of people here, we are so proud of the totality of the group and we take great pride in our harmony.”
The Las Vegas Healing Garden and Remembrance Wall
It started with a vision on a napkin. With an estimated 400 volunteers, along with hundreds who donated material and expertise, the Las Vegas Healing Garden and Remembrance Wall was revealed during First Friday on Oct. 6.
During the opening ceremony and ribbon cutting, City Attorney Brad Jerbic gave an emotional speech. Cameron Robinson, a records specialist in Jerbic’s office, was among the 58 victims and Robinson’s partner was wounded. Choirs sang and Mayor Goodman told the crowd that there are 58 new stars in the sky.
The park will feature a pathway, seating area and memorial wall as well as 58 trees planted to remember the victims who died during the Route 91 Harvest festival. The remembrance wall includes messages, photos and memories. At the garden’s center is the Tree of Life, an oak donated by Siegfried and Roy.
The garden and wall continues to draw crowds, located at Casino Center Boulevard and Coolidge Avenue in downtown Las Vegas.