Santa Monica Mayor Pam O’Connor made the following remarks on behalf of the Santa Monica City Council at Monday’s night’s vigil at Santa Monica College.
“I am joined tonight by my Council colleagues and our City Manager, Rod Gould and members of our Santa Monica City staff. We are gathered here tonight to begin recovery — together — as a community after last Friday’s events.
Our condolences go out to the families and victims of that tragic day. For those who have lost loved ones, our hearts ache for you and we offer our support to you as we move forward together.
Today and going forward, we must begin to recover and heal. The loss is too much to bear as individuals. We will begin recovery together as a community. As a City, we are working closely with Santa Monica College and the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District to provide assistance to our schools community. For community members that might need help with processing the events of last Friday, free counseling services will be made available at Virginia Avenue Park later this week. City staff and our community partners have also begun planning additional steps that draw on the strength of our community ties to begin healing.
Over the next week and beyond, we must commit to the healing process- to grieve, adapt and cope. Simple things like checking in on one another will take on great significance. Sometimes just listening and being there for one another is the greatest comfort we can offer. As a community, we’ll grow stronger and from that strength discover how to truly heal.
Let’s hold each other in our hearts and work together as a community to move forward.”