This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
A stranger's umbrella and a shared flame pulled Kellian Donnelly out of denial as she joined hundreds in a vigil outside Salt Lake City Hall in remembrance of victims of Sunday's shooting at an Orlando, Fla., nightclub.
Donnelly said she "just went numb" upon learning of the massacre of 49 people.
"A mass shooting is not a surprise anymore," Donnelly said.
But on Monday night, a woman Donnelly had never met reached out to her as rain fell over the crowd at City Hall.
"She lit my candle, and we shared the umbrella and we started crying ... realizing that it's not right to be numb to mass murder, and it shouldn't be something we become used to," Donnelly said.
Mourners wept as speakers and musicians took to the microphone in solidarity with Orlando, and with LGBT and Latino communities stricken by the shooting at Pulse, a gay night club.
"The events at Pulse must be linked to the events at Stonewall," said Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski. "The Latino face of this tragedy must not be whitewashed."
LGBT people of color particularly transgender women face exceptional risks of violence, noted Patrick Alba, a board member of the Utah Coalition of La Raza.
"Many straight people worry about sharing the bathroom; queer people worry about being killed for existing," said Lesley Ann Shaw, who identifies as transgender and nonbinary.
Said Biskupski, who is Salt Lake City's first lesbian mayor: "Many in the LGBT community are living in fear. I have heard from many ... who are afraid to go out."
Stephen Bolinder, who attended the vigil in full regalia and makeup as part of the Zion Curtain Sisters LGBT order, said he was "apprehensive" to appear in public in feminine dress as Sister Spyd'a Web, his identity in the order.
"I know there are a lot of copycats," he said.
Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox asked straight Utahns to consider their reaction to the shooting.
"There are two questions each of us needs to ask ourselves: How did you feel when you heard 49 people had been killed ... and did that feeling change when you found out that shooting was at a gay bar at 2 o'clock in the morning?" Cox asked.
Answered Shaw: "If you can't wrap your head around a bar or a club being a sanctuary, you've probably never had to fear holding someone's hand in public."
Noor Ul-Hasan, a leader in Salt Lake City's Muslim community, wept as she spoke to the crowd.
"It was hard for me to write a speech," she said. "What can I say to console all of you? ... We are all, you are all children of God. You have a right to live this life."
She asked the crowd not to fear Muslims in Utah and pointed to the Golden Rule as taught in Islam.
"Not one of you is a believer unless he desires for his brother what he desires for himself," Ul-Hasan recited. "That was not a believer who did this."