"When I first heard the news this morning, my heart sunk."
Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer held a news conference this morning to show his city’s support of emergency personnel and their efforts to help those in the aftermath of the Las Vegas mass shooting.
Dyer was mayor during the Pulse Nightclub shootings which took 49 lives and injured 56 others, the deadliest of its kind in the U.S. until now.
On the evening of Sunday, October 1, a lone gunman opened fire from the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay Casino in Las Vegas on a group of festival goers attending a Jason Aldean concert.
The death toll as it stands as of this writing is 58, with more than 515 injured.
"When I first heard the news this morning, my heart sunk," said Mayor Dyer to reporters. "It immediately took me back to June the twelfth of last year.”
Based on that experience, he said he immediately reached out Las Vegas Mayor and good friend Carolyn Goodman to offer assistance and support, “It is our unique responsibility to share our knowledge and experience," he said.
One of the things he emphasized was outreach provided by the Family Resource Center, “In the wake of the Pulse shooting we could have never envisioned what it would take to care for and nurture the victims and their families and their loved-ones. But now we do understand the magnitude of the needs of the victims and their families that they are going to have in the coming hours, days and months and years.”
Orlando residents have reached out to his office to offer support for Las Vegas but aren't sure how to do so. To those, he suggests giving blood, not only in this aftermath but whenever they can.
Another concern is Pulse victims who may be affected with emotional anguish upon hearing the news this morning.
“This may re-create the feeling that many had on June the twelfth of last year," he said. "So if you know a Pulse survivor or family member of those who were lost, do check in on them. Reach out the Orlando United assistance Center by calling 407-500-HOPE. It’s a number that is open twenty-four-seven, mental health care providers are standing by.”
Mayor Dyer ended the conference saying Orlando stands with Las Vegas during this devastating event.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. Orlando stands united with Las Vegas. And we will be here to support Las Vegas in the long-term in any way we can.”
You can watch the news conference in its entirety by clicking HERE.
The San Diego LGBT Center can provide you information on counseling services and outreach by calling 619.692.2077 x208.