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House LGBT Caucus Commemorates Tragic Pulse Shooting on Second Anniversary

Jun 18, 2018
Press Release


1727 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515

Date:  June 12, 2018      Contact:  Roddy Flynn, 202-257-8416


House LGBT Caucus Commemorates Tragic Pulse Shooting on Second Anniversary

Washington D.C. - Today, the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus released the following statements in remembrance of last year’s shooting at the historic Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, FL, in which 49 people were murdered.

“Today marks one of the darkest moments in not only LGBTQ history but American history,” said Rep. Jared Polis (CO-02).  “This Pride, I urge you to remember those lives that were taken from us just for simply existing and loving who they loved.  Remember, the mothers who cried and the partners who mourned.  Remember the church bells ringing 49 times for each life lost.  Just remember, as this tragic event threatens our community, we continue to unite and protect diversity, equality, and freedom for all Americans.”

“Pride Month is supposed to be a time when our community can celebrate who we are and how far we’ve come – not worry about being the victims of gun violence,” said Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18). My heart is with everyone still hurting from the shooting. But it’s important to remember that our community is bigger than hate, it’s bigger than violence, and when we set our mind to something, we get shit done. The Pulse shooting was a great tragedy, but it got us in the game on gun safety.”

“Today we honor the memories of the 49 people who were murdered two years ago in a horrific hate crime that targeted the LGBT community, and we comfort the families and friends who continue grieving,” said Rep. Mark Takano (CA-41).  “During Pride Month, we hail our progress toward equal rights and revel in the freedom to be who we are, but we must also remember those who have died because they were different. We will never forget them, or stop fighting for the day when all of us are equal under the law.”

“On the second anniversary of the Pulse shooting, we continue to mourn for the victims, their families and friends, and everyone impacted by this tragedy. As Americans across the country come together to celebrate Pride Month, we stand united against violence, hatred, and bigotry, while recommitting ourselves to fighting for love, acceptance, and equality,” said Rep. Mark Pocan (WI-02). “The LGBT community is resilient and we will continue fighting to create change and ensure that a tragedy like this never happens again. As a Co-Chair of the Equality Caucus, I will continue to demand a vote in the House to take meaningful steps to end gun violence and achieve LGBT equality.”

“Two years ago, a night of celebration turned into a nightmare of unspeakable horror,” said Rep. David Cicilline (RI-01).  “More than four dozen innocent people were murdered because a dangerous person with hatred in his heart was able to get his hands on a gun. Two years later, the Republicans who control Congress have still done nothing to prevent further bloodshed. The victims of this attack and their loved ones deserve better. In their memory, we need to continue pressing for real solutions that will reduce gun violence in our country.”

“Two years ago, we lost 49 people at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando to a senseless and hateful act of violence,” said Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09). “From this painful tragedy, we emerged stronger and more committed than ever to standing up to those who seek to divide us or do our communities harm. We must work toward a brighter, more just future for all Americans.”

The 49 people who died in the shooting are Edward Sotomayor Jr., 34; Stanley Almodovar III, 23; Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo, 20; Juan Ramon Guerrero, 22; Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera, 36; Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz, 22; Luis S. Vielma, 22; Kimberly Morris, 37; Eddie Jamoldroy Justice, 30; Darryl Roman Burt II, 29; Deonka Deidra Drayton, 32; Alejandro Barrios Martinez, 21; Anthony Luis Laureanodisla, 25; Jean Carlos Mendez Perez, 35; Franky Jimmy Dejesus Velazquez, 50; Amanda Alvear, 25; Martin Benitez Torres, 33; Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon, 37; Mercedez Marisol Flores, 26; Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado, 35; Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez, 25; Simon Adrian Carrillo Fernandez, 31; Oscar A. Aracena-Montero, 26; Enrique L. Rios Jr., 25; Miguel Angel Honorato, 30; Javier Jorge-Reyes, 40; Joel Rayon Paniagua, 32; Jason Benjamin Josaphat, 19; Cory James Connell, 21; Luis Daniel Conde, 39; Shane Evan Tomlinson, 33; Juan Chevez-Martinez, 25; Jerald Arthur Wright, 31; Leroy Valentin Fernandez, 25; Tevin Eugene Crosby, 25; Jonathan Antonio Camuy Vega, 24; Jean C. Nives Rodriguez, 27; Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala, 33; Brenda Lee Marquez McCool, 49; Yilmary Rodriguez Sulivan, 24; Christopher Andrew Leinonen, 32; Angel L. Candelario-Padro, 28; Frank Hernandez, 27; Paul Terrell Henry, 41; Antonio Davon Brown, 29; Christopher Joseph Sanfeliz, 24; Akyra Monet Murray, 18; and Geraldo A. Ortiz-Jimenez, 25.

Please contact LGBT Equality Caucus Executive Director Roddy Flynn at or (202) 257-8416 (cell) with media inquiries.

The mission of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus is to promote lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) equality. The bi-partisan LGBT Equality Caucus is strongly committed to achieving the full enjoyment of human rights for LGBT people in the U.S. and around the world. By serving as a resource for Members of Congress, their staff, and the public on LGBT issues, the Caucus works toward the extension of equal rights, the repeal of discriminatory laws, the elimination of hate-motivated violence, and the improved health and wellbeing for all regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression.