Of all of the victims, they’ve only released one name so far. 18-year-old Gina Callander. She’s beautiful. I just spent the past half hour going through her photos, her words. I wanted to know the kind of person who was taken from us after last night’s traumatizing events. I wanted to remember her name. She deserves as much.
Most prominently, she loves music. She absolutely lives for it. She’s met Ariana, Union J. She has so many photos posted from seeing Fifth Harmony, Little Mix, and One Direction live. Louis follows her on twitter, and she posted screenshots about how she immediately sent him DMs of how much she loves him (before his DM was open to the public). She travels for these concerts, for these meetings. Her excitement is palpable. She met up with Tyler Oakley and her posts brought tears to my eyes. She talks about engaging with these people with nothing but gratitude and love and amazement. She was so, so happy.
She is you. She is me. She is all of us.
I am so sorry. Sorry that these children are gone. Sorry that a safe place is now rattled. Sorry that we have to come together, yet again, in a time of crisis to lean on one another for strength. Sorry that Gina never got the chance to know how many people in the world love her.
A piece of our hearts was taken away from us last night. We have to get it back. For those who are gone, and for ourselves.