The skating rink at Bryant Park in NYC is one of the many things I look forward to opening once the weather gets cold. It's a place for families, for tourists, for couples, for everyone. And last night it became one of the most terrifying places to be. A gunman opened fire on the skaters at the rink at around 11 p.m.
That gunman is still at large as of print time, and there are two victims including a 14-year-old boy, described as an avid skater, who may now be paralyzed as a result of being shot in the back as he skated on the crowded rink.
We face fears when our children go to school. There is concern when we go into malls. And public skating rinks. All because of gun violence. Shooters who have no fear to go out in public and shoot into crowds. We have to live through this fear, overcome it, go on with our lives, but at the same time carry that concern. The sadness. That why.
The gunman opened fire outside the rink from W. 40th Street and 5th Avenue. Adonis Mera, 14, was skating around and was shot in the back. An unidentified 20-year-old man was also struck in the arm. But Mera's brother Jorge Arias reported that his brother may never be able to walk again. "He can’t move anything from the waist down," his brother said. It is believed that Mera was not the intended target but an innocent bystander. One theory from the police is that the shooting may have stemmed from an argument over a coat or some article of clothing, but they are still investigating ... and trying to find out WHO the gunman is.
The shooter fired three shots into the very crowded rink, then ran away. The skaters all rushed to take cover and there was a stampede which resulted in many injuries.
I hope they find the person responsible. I think we all want to know why this happened. And my thoughts are with Adonis Mera, who I hope recovers without serious injury.
Does this shooting make you more fearful of public places?
Image via Daniel Lobo/Flickr