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Mayor Richard Alcombright

TLC #28: SPECIAL — Vigil for Orlando in Park Square

Local residents Ed Bailey (left) and Tony Barini speak about a friend, KJ "Kim" Morris, who was murdered in the Pulse mass shooting in Orlando, Fla. June 12, 2016 (photo by Jason Velázquez)
Local residents Ed Bailey (left) and Tony Barini speak about a friend, KJ "Kim" Morris, who was murdered in the Pulse mass shooting in Orlando, Fla. June 12, 2016 (photo by Jason Velázquez)

PITTSFIELD, Mass.—Hundreds of people converged on Park Square in Pittsfield Tuesday to show support for the survivors and families of victims of the massacre at an Orlando, Fla. nightclub two days earlier. The event, the Vigil for Orlando & Against Violence and Hate, included song, prayer, oratory, and calls for action to end such gun violence.

Local residents Ed Bailey (left) and Tony Barini speak about a friend, KJ "Kim" Morris, who was murdered in the Pulse mass shooting in Orlando, Fla. June 12, 2016 at the Vigil for Orlando (photo by Jason Velázquez)
Local residents Ed Bailey (left) and Tony Barini speak about a friend, KJ “Kim” Morris, who was murdered in the Pulse mass shooting in Orlando, Fla. June 12, 2016 (photo by Jason Velázquez)

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In the early morning hours of June 12, 2016, 29 year old Omar Mateen walked into Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

Armed with a semi-automatic rifle and a 9 mm handgun, Mateen opened fire on the unsuspecting patrons of the club, killing 49 and injuring 53. The attack was the deadliest mass shooting by a single gunman in United States history. It was also the deadliest incident of violence against LGBT people in the U.S.

Vigil for Orlando quickly assembled by local volunteers

People in the Berkshires of Massachusetts, like most Americans, were stunned and horrified at this tragic episode. While the police investigation continued, and details about the shooter and his victims trickled in, volunteers quickly organized a vigil in Park Square in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, held the evening of the following Tuesday. One of the volunteers, longtime community organizer and arts advocate Meghan Whilden was on hand to help guide the vigil and introduce performers and speakers, including local residents, members of the clergy and political figures.

This episode is the full audio of this vigil, attended by hundreds of people who came to mourn the loss of life in solidarity and call for action to prevent future massacres. The recording begins just after Meghan Whilden has introduced the Reverend Dr. James Lumsden Pastor at First Church on Park Square, who led the crowd in singing “We are a gentle angry people, singing for our lives.”

Read more about the event on its Facebook page or at iBerkshires.

 

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The Top Left Corner #26: Greylock Cultural Corridor, Pine Cobble Craft Fair

Artists Aerial Rendering of the proposed museum of Extreme Model Railroad and Contemporary Architecture; submitted photo.
Artists Aerial Rendering of the proposed museum of Extreme Model Railroad and Contemporary Architecture; submitted photo.

Tammy Daniels, managing editor of iBerkshires.com joins TLC to talk about the proposed developments to the Greylock Cultural Corridor. First though, we hear from Katherine Cortes, who describes the first ever “Craft Fair on the Hill” taking place at Pine Cobble School December 12.

Twenty vendors will turn out to offer their wares at the very first "Craft Fair on the Hill" at Pine Cobble School in Williamstown, December 12; collage assembled from images courtesy Craft Fair on the Hill via Facebook.
Twenty vendors will turn out to offer their wares at the very first “Craft Fair on the Hill” at Pine Cobble School in Williamstown, December 12;
collage assembled from images courtesy Craft Fair on the Hillvia Facebook.

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