BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — It’s been one week since 10 people were killed and three wounded in a violent act of white supremacist terrorism at the Tops Markets on Jefferson Avenue.
The City of Buffalo will observe a moment of silence today on the steps of City Hall to honor the 13 victims of the mass shooting.
The 123-second moment of silence will begin at 2:28:57 p.m. and end at 2:31:00 p.m.
Following the period of silence, the bells of Queen City houses of worship will ring 13 times to honor the victims of this tragic attack.
“It’s still hard to process because you never think it will happen here,” Tabitha Parker, a local pastor, told News 4.
Every day since the attack occurred, community volunteers and organizations provided food and other resources to area residents who are now without a grocery store, pharmacy and other essentials that Tops’ provided.
“Unity in the community. I’ve seen a lot of unity,” Murray Holman, executive director of Stop the Violence Coalition, said.
As resources, donations and support pour in from across the city and nation, community leaders say it has to be sustained for there to be real change.
“Otherwise this becomes an event and we cannot let that happen,” Brenda McDuffie, former president of the Buffalo Urban League, added.
Many neighbors say this week was about honoring the victims and remembering their legacy.
“I promised each and every family member here I will keep their memory alive because that’s my job,” Le’Candice Durham, a community volunteer, said while fighting back tears.
Tabitha Parker says she knew Andre MacKniel she called him a devoted father to his five children.
“It’s sad to know that he was just here to get a birthday cake,” she explained.
Sherece Lewis worked with Pearl Young, who regularly let foster children stay at her home. Sherece remembers driving with Pearl to Rochester.
“She just talked all day about anything and everything. She was knitting and talking. Every time you went to her home she always had cookies and some type of soup,” Lewis said.
The healing process will be long, but many say uniting together as one city is the right place to start.
“We just have to be better. We just got to be better,” Oswaldo Mestre, director of citizen services for the City of Buffalo, said.
“We’re coming together and becoming stronger. That’s when the healing process begins to take place over time,” McDuffie continued.
“I just love Buffalo and we’re strong and we’ll get through this,” Lewis concluded.
On Sunday, a vigil will be held by St. Philip’s Episcopal Church at 6 p.m. outside of the Tops Market at the corner of Landon St. and Jefferson Ave. Speakers will include the Rev. Paul J. Thomas, pastor of Historic Bethel AME Church in Buffalo, Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church and the Rev. Traci Blackmon, associate general minister of Justice & Local Church Ministries for The United Church of Christ.
Remembering who we lost:
Roberta A. Drury, 32
Margus D. Morrison, 52
Andre Mackniel, 53
Aaron Salter, 55
Geraldine Talley, 62
Celestine Chaney, 65
Heyward Patterson, 67
Katherine Massey, 72
Pearl Young, 77
Ruth Whitfield, 86
Zaire Goodman, 20
Jennifer Warrington, 50
Christopher Braden, 55
The full press conference from City Hall can be viewed above.
Tara Lynch is a Buffalo native who joined the News 4 team as a reporter in 2022. She previously worked at WETM in Elmira, N.Y., a sister station of News 4. You can follow Tara on Facebook and Twitter and find more of her work here.