Published July 23, 2012
AURORA, Colo. – The names of the dead from Friday's midnight movie massacre were spoken, but that of their alleged killer was not as grief-stricken residents gathered for a vigil Sunday, just two days after a gunman shot up a crowded movie theater and plunged this Denver suburb into despair.
With a helicopter circling high above and snipers watching from nearby rooftops, the specter of violence loomed even as young and old pulled together to speed the healing process. Boy Scouts passed out water and grim-faced police officers stood by as speakers, including Gov. John Hickenlooper, vowed that Aurora would honor its dead and care for its wounded following the horrific attack that left 12 dead and scores injured.
"We will remember," the crowd intoned with solemn determination after Hickenlooper ticked off the names of each of those killed. He drew thunderous applause when he said of suspect James Holmes, "I refuse to say his name."
The crowd at Aurora Municipal Center saved its longest ovation for the police and rescue workers, and family members of the dead and wounded stood to acknowledge their gratitude. People of all ages were at the vigil, including 11-year-old Bryon Allen, who hoisted a sign saying "Real heroes don't wear capes."
"I was in the mountains when it happened I didn't know that it happened until my aunt told me when we were coming back," the boy told FoxNews.com. "We heard a little girl she got shot and, um, she died. I want to honor police and fireman."
His friend Zac Wade, 8, from Arvada, said he wanted to "honor police and fireman that helped."
Earlier in the day, President Obama visited with victims at area hospitals, listening to their harrowing stories of death at the sowing of the Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises," and quoting scripture to offer inspiration to a town desperately in need of it.
"He will wipe away every tear and death shall be no more, " Obama said at the University of Colorado Hospital Sunday evening, quoting the New Testament Book of Revelation.
"I come to them not so much as president but as a father and a husband," Obama said. "I confessed to them that while words are always inadequate in these kinds of situations, my main task is to be a representative of the entire country and to let them know that we think about them each and every day."