NASHVILE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The city of Nashville held a vigil Monday night for the victims of the tragic mass shooting in Las Vegas.
More than 50 people were killed and over 500 injured Sunday night in what’s being called the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. According to authorities, a gunman opened fire from the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino onto a crowd of concert goers as Jason Aldean played on the stage.
Country music is coming together with the city to pay homage to the victims. Several artists performed, including Keith Urban, Amy Grant, Vince Gill, and Alison Krauss, with Chip Esten emceeing.
“We’re here to lift up those who died. We’re here to lift up those who are wounded and their loved ones. We’re here to lift up those who are mourning as best we can in this moment,” Esten told the crowd.
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“We’re here to support the larger community of Las Vegas. We’re here to support the larger community of country music and country music fans and artists who have been shaken by this event, and we’re here to support each other, to lean on each other on this dark day,” he continued.
Vince Gill took the stage first with a message to everyone who came to watch the vigil.
“May we never lose our voice for innocent people,” he said before singing his hit song, finished after the death of his brother, “Go Rest High on That Mountain.”
Amy Grant, his wife and fellow country star, then joined Gill on stage to lead everyone in prayer, asking the crowd to hold hands or touch the person next to them as she spoke.
“Father, in silence, we lift up–we just imagine all of the people rebuilding their lives–broken, grieving–and as a group, I don’t even know how to imagine lifting them all up, but I’m just picturing us almost like slinging them on our backs, lifting them up in our arms to the light of your love,” she said in prayer.
Grant then introduced Mayor Megan Barry, who spoke on recent violence in Nashville after one was killed and seven were injured inside an Antioch church last week.
“This is second Monday night in a row that we’ve had a vigil in Nashville the day after a horrific mass shooting. Last week, it happened at a small church right here in our community. This week, a big outdoor music festival in another city,” the mayor began.
“Death visited two places where people were simply doing things that give life meaning and give life joy. They were worshiping their God, they were listening to music, they were enjoying good times with family and friends,” she continued.
“We shouldn’t have to worry about gunfire in those places, and you certainly shouldn’t have to worry about dying, but in both of those places, we saw innocent lives wiped out, and families’ lives changed forever,” Barry stated.
Keith Urban followed the mayor, saying he first wanted to offer his prayers and love to everyone affected by “last night’s horrific tragedy.”
“I started this morning by finding out about it, and being shell-shocked all morning,” he said, telling the crowd he had to explain to his nine-year-old daughter how such an event affects so many.
The Australian country singer then covered Simon and Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” and was followed by Alison Krauss and The Cox family who led the vigil in prayer before singing “Amazing Grace.”
Esten closed Monday night’s vigil by raising awareness for the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee’s fund where 100 percent of donations will go toward the victims of the mass shooting.