ORLANDO, Fla. – The annual event held each year on June 12 to honor the 49 victims who lost their lives during the mass shooting at Pulse nightclub will be hosted virtually this summer for the first time ever due to concerns about the coronavirus.
Typically, the Annual Remembrance Ceremony is hosted outside the Pulse Interim Memorial in Orlando’s SoDo neighborhood. Hundreds gather -- including survivors and families of victims -- to light candles, ring bells and reflect on the aftermath of the June 12, 2016 tragedy.
“Please know we do not make these decisions lightly -- we will always prioritize the health and safety of the public, the Pulse community and our employees,” onePULSE Foundation CEO Barbara Poma said. “We are exploring different ways to honor and remember the 49 Angels, survivors, first responders and all those affected by the Pulse tragedy.”
Details on how exactly the virtual ceremony will be broadcast have not yet been released but will be communicated through the foundation’s website and social media pages.
“This unprecedented time in our country has been uncomfortable for many, but the public health measures and continuity solutions adopted by onePULSE Foundation are examples of how local organizations are working together to break the backbone of this virus,” Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said. “Working collaboratively, similar to the months after the Pulse tragedy, we can begin to heal as a community while honoring our 49 Angels.”
Officials also announced Thursday that Fourth Annual CommUNITY Rainbow Run 4.9K, originally slated for June 6 at Wadeview Park, has been rescheduled for Sept. 12. Those who were already registered will automatically be set for the new date. Refunds will not be issued for registration fees or donations.
On the same day, runners can also opt to participate in the PNC Bank 4.9K Virtual Run, which can be done at the person’s own pace from anywhere around the globe.
To register, click here.