One year later: Churches and community members remember lives lost in Buffalo mass shooting

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BUFFALO, N.Y. – It was a somber day of remembrance at Mt. Olivet Baptist Church in Rochester as the congregation remembered the 10 lives lost in a mass shooting at a Tops Supermarket in Buffalo one year ago.

“As a result of what happened in Buffalo at Tops, we are living a whole different life now. That’s from the church. That’s from being careful walking into stores, walking into malls, walking into your neighborhoods,” Dr. Rickey Bernard Harvey, Pastor of Mt. Olivet Baptist Church said.

People were taking time to celebrate Mother’s Day, life, and reflect on the senseless act of violence in Buffalo inspired by racism and hate.

“I hope that we have learned. I hope we are safer community. I hope we are more conscious of our surroundings when it comes to doing anything we have to do now,” said Harvey.

The Reverend Al Sharpton joined the congregation at True Bethel and Saint John the Baptist churches in Buffalo on Sunday. Calling for action over words.

“Somebody needs to deal with stopping this tragedy, and as much as we are going to hear today in Buffalo about healing, you can’t heal until you deal with the wound,” Sharpton said.

Healing that won’t begin until Rev. Sharpton said people of all colors and nationalities remember what happened and why.

“It was the racism and bias and hate that drove him there, and he was proud of it because he live streamed himself doing it,” Sharpton said.

But even in the face of horrific tragedy, the power of hope and peace prevailed in communities across the region on Sunday.

Mt. Olivet Baptist Church member Evanger Cunninghan said, “I just hope that all the love that we can share, and hopefully that there will be peace, and that we can bring all peace and happiness together, in the community and worldwide.”