On October 2, 2017, I just wanted to help my city. I awoke that morning to the news of the mass shooting that occurred the previous night just minutes away from my home. My friends and I went to the Miracle Mile Mall in Planet Hollywood on the Strip. Many people sought safety in this mall during the shooting.
We went with signs saying: Prayer, Smile, Hugs, and Encouragement. We talked with whomever wanted to talk. We smiled at all who made eye contact. We asked people if they were ok. Security guards and store managers told us their stories of events that happened less than 24 hours prior. I’ve never heard my city and the Strip so quiet.
We visited the Coffee Bean in the mall. I once managed that store and I wanted to see how they were handling the emotions of the event. As I was talking with Angel, I knew to give her my key. Even in the midst of the tragedy and working on the Strip, she wanted to share a celebratory moment with me: She’s recently engaged. She sees so many of the mall employees as they visit this store for breakfast and coffee. Her inspiration and celebration will be great encouragement on the Strip as our city heals.