Editor’s Desk: Pulse Orlando 3 Years Later

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On June 12th, 2016, 49 lives were lost to anti-LGBTQ ignorance and hatred at the Pulse Orlando Night Club. That night, 49 people were murdered, and dozens more injured, in a senseless hate crime against the LGBTQA+ community, in what was deemed, at the time, the most deadly shooting in U.S. history. As we continue to observe the Pulse Orlando anniversary, we will remember our lost family (communities of color and allies), as we continue to mobilize and rise up to conquer hate. Thirty-two (32) of the victims were Latinx, nineteen (19) were from Puerto Rico. Their names are below. Remember them. 

We are committed to standing united to take on homophobia in the most fierce way possible. We report on exclusive stories that touch on hands-on activism, collective intersectionalities, education, truth and our collective raging love for one another, to resist the bigotry that continues to be directed against this marginalized community—through “religious” tactics rooted in bigotry—emboldened by the words directly coming from the White House. 

But today, we honor the lives of the 49 fallen ones, their legacy, their teachings through how freely and openly they lived their lives, even daringly at times. We will not forget. We will continue to remember them. 

Edward Sotomayor Jr., 34, Florida

Stanley Almodovar III, 23, Florida

Juan Ramon Guerrero, 22,

Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera, 36, Orlando, Florida

Luis S. Vielma, 22, Sanford, Florida

Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz, 22, Puerto Rico

Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo, 20, Puerto Rico

KJ Morris, 37, Connecticut

Eddie Jamoldroy Justice, 30, Florida

Darryl Roman Burt II, 29, Virginia

Deonka Deidra Drayton, 32, South Carolina

Anthony Luis Laureano Disla, 25, Puerto Rico

Jean Carlos Mendez Perez, 35, Puerto Rico

Franky Jimmy Dejesus Velazquez, 50, Puerto Rico

Amanda Alvear, 25, Florida

Martin Benitez Torres, 33, Puerto Rico

Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon, 37, Puerto Rico

Mercedez Marisol Flores, 26, New York

Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado, 35, Puerto Rico

Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez, 25, Puerto Rico

Oscar A Aracena-Montero, 26, Dominican Republic

Simon Adrian Carrillo Fernandez, 31, Venezuela

Enrique L. Rios Jr., 25, New York

Miguel Angel Honorato, 30, Mexico

Javier Jorge-Reyes, 40, Puerto Rico

Jason Benjamin Josaphat, 19, Arizona

Cory James Connell, 21, Florida

Juan Pablo Rivera Velazquez, 37, Puerto Rico

Luis Daniel Conde, 39, Puerto Rico

Jonathan Antonio Camuy Vega, 24, Puerto Rico

Christopher Andrew Leinonen, 32, Michigan

Frank Hernandez, 27, Texas

Shane Evan Tomlinson, 33, North Carolina

Brenda Lee Marquez McCool, 49, New York

Angel L. Candelario-Padro, 28, Puerto Rico

Geraldo A. Ortiz-Jimenez, 25, Dominican Republic

Akyra Monet Murray, 18, Philadelphia, PA

Paul Terrell Henry, 41, Chicago

Antonio Davon Brown, 29, Oklahoma

Christopher Joseph Sanfeliz, 24, Cuba

Alejandro Barrios Martinez, 21, Cuban-American

Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala, 33, Puerto Rico

Tevin Eugene Crosby, 25, North Carolina

Yilmary Rodriguez Solivan, 24, Puerto Rico

Joel Rayon Paniagua, 32, Mexico

Juan Chevez-Martinez, 25, Mexico

Jerald Arthur Wright, 31, Ecuador

Leroy Valentin Fernandez, 25, Puerto Rico

Jean C. Nieves Rodriguez, 27, Puerto Rico

In 2016, we published a special pull-out supplement to honor the lives of the Pulse Orlando victims. In these pages, you will find information about the victims’ names, their take on life, their likes, and dislikes, even eerily spoken premonitions of some. Most importantly, you will get to know them a little better, in their own words, as The Rainbow Times’ team researched their lives on social media, their messages to loved ones, their last phone calls, in an effort to help you get to know them better. Today, we continue to #HonorThemWithActions and #SayTheirNames. We hope you do the same.

—TRT Management