Spokane mourns alongside Pittsburgh in wake of synagogue shooting
SPOKANE, Wash. — Spokane’s Jewish community has organized two vigils to honor the loss of the 11 men and women in Saturday’s synagogue shooting.
Robert Bowers, 46, is accused of opening fire at the Tree of Life synagogue in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood Saturday, killing 11 Jewish people. The youngest victim was 54 years old.
Temple Beth Shalom will host a vigil Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. at 1322 E 30th Ave in Spokane. Temple Beth Shalom released a statement Tuesday saying in part “we are outraged by the hatred this senseless act demonstrated, and distraught by the bloodshed brought once again by violence.”
Holocaust survivor Marion Blumenthal Lazan will speak at the Spokane Convention Center Tuesday night from 7 to 9 p.m. The event will be hosted by Chabad of Spokane, an organization that helps the city’s Jewish community. Chabad will hold a vigil outside the convention center before the speech on Tuesday.
Rabbi Yisroel Hahn with Chabad of Spokane spoke to KXLY4 Monday. Rabbi Hahn said he found out about Saturday’s shooting hours later, when he got out of Shabbat.
“Obviously I was horrified. I was shocked. I couldn’t believe it,” Rabbi Hahn said. “He didn’t just attack Jews. He attacked Judaism itself.”
Hahn said if you can’t attend the speech or the vigils this week, no matter what you believe, there’s one way we can remember the men and women killed this weekend.
“We need to fight this battle of darkness with light,” Rabbi Hahn said. “If each of us could go and take 11 acts of goodness and kindness and perform them immediately, that’s the greatest memory we could do.”
Online tickets to Blumenthal Lazan’s speech are $18. Door tickets will sell for $20. Rabbi Hahn said he would offer discounts to people who would like to attend but cannot afford a ticket.
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