On Wednesday, November 23, the Montrose Center and its partners held a vigil honoring the victims of the tragic shooting at Club Q in Colorado Springs. It was a poignant evening of unity and support that was attended by over 150 community members.
The candlelit vigil opened with a beautiful violin rendition of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” by Angelina DM Trailz. Featured speakers of the evening included Ian Haddock of The Normal Anomaly Initiative, Mario Castillo of the Houston LGBTQ+ Political Caucus, Jonatan Gioia of Latino Outreach and Understanding Division (SOMOS LOUD), Elia Chino of Fundación Latinoamericana de Acción Social (FLAS), Landon Richie of the Transgender Education Network of Texas (TENT), and Austin Davis Ruiz of the Montrose Center. Each speaker shared powerful and uplifting words standing in solidarity with Club Q, while also advocating for impactful community change.
Center staff read moving statements of support from Mayor Sylvester Turner, Council Member Abbie Kamin, and State Representative Jolanda Jones, all who strongly condemned the hateful violence and called upon their fellow colleagues to protect the LGBTQ+ community. The evening ended by holding a moment of silence for the victims—Daniel Davis Aston, 28, Kelly Loving, 40, Ashley Paugh, 35, Derrick Rump, 38, and Raymond Green Vance, 22—followed by a vocal performance of “Amor Eterno” by Angelina DM Trailz.
Current and former elected officials in attendance included Council Member Sallie Alcorn, Council Member Robert Gallegos, Constable Alan Rosen, State Representative Jolanda Jones, State Representative Christina Morales, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, and former Mayor Annise Parker. The Montrose Center would like to thank all its partners that contributed to the vigil, to all the elected officials that submitted words of support or that attended, to Jonatan Gioia and SOMOS LOUD for providing bilingual translation for the event, to AURA Systems for their help in providing A/V equipment, and to all the community members that joined.
To support of our continued efforts to build community and provide resources and support to those in need, please consider a gift to your LGBTQ center before the year ends.