xi's moments
Home | Americas

Buffalo gun victim laid to rest after city's week of pain

China Daily | Updated: 2022-05-23 09:57

Mourners pray on Saturday at a memorial for the victims of the Buffalo supermarket shooting outside the Tops Friendly Market, where a gunman struck on May 14. JOSHUA BESSEX/AP

BUFFALO-Roberta Drury, a 32-year-old woman who was the youngest of the 10 black people killed at a Buffalo supermarket, was remembered at her funeral on Saturday for "that smile that could light up a room", as the city marked one week since the shooting with sorrowful moments of silence.

"Robbie", as she was called, grew up in the Syracuse area and moved to Buffalo a decade ago to help tend to her brother in his fight against leukemia. She was shot dead on May 14 on a trip to buy groceries at the Tops Friendly Market targeted by the white gunman.

"There are no words to fully express the depth and breadth of this tragedy," Friar Nicholas Spano, parochial vicar of Assumption Church, said during the funeral service in Syracuse, not far from where Drury grew up in Cicero.

"Last Saturday, May 14, our corner of the world was changed forever," he said. "Lives ended. Dreams shattered and our state was plunged into mourning."

Drury's family wrote in her obituary that she "couldn't walk a few steps without meeting a new friend".

After the funeral, at the Tops store in Buffalo, the mood was a mixture of tension and somber reflection as the city marked one week since the racist massacre.

At exactly 2:30 pm, the moment the gunman opened fire, people who gathered and placed flowers near the corner where the victims have been memorialized observed a moment of silence. A dozen workers stood in a line outside the Tops store entrance. Nearby, some mourners wept.

At the same time, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown and other elected officials, with Tops President John Persons, bowed their heads on the steps of City Hall for 123 seconds to mark the span of the attack. Houses of worship throughout the city were encouraged to ring their bells 13 times in honor of the 10 killed and three wounded.

Joshua Kellick, a mental health and substance abuse counselor in Buffalo, said victim Geraldine Talley, 62, was a friend.

"She was nothing but loving and giving. She would go out of her way to help everybody. She was a mother, a grandmother to everybody, without actually being just that," said Kellick, who gathered with several of Talley's former co-workers to observe the moment of silence.

A private service was held on Friday for Heyward Patterson, the beloved deacon at a church near the supermarket. More funerals are scheduled throughout the coming week.

Agencies via Xinhua

Global Edition
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349