NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Hundreds gathered in Metairie Sunday evening (Oct. 28) to remember the 11 lives lost in a mass shooting at a Pennsylvania synagogue the day before and to stand in solidarity with those mourning in Pittsburgh.
“It’s impressive. It’s overwhelming,” New Orleans City Council Member Jared Brossett said.
Every seat was filled at Shir Chadash Conservative Congregation, where people from all walks of life came together to stand in unity with the victims and their families.
“A vigil to honor those that lost their lives, to extend our hearts and prayers to the victims and their families and to send a resounding message within the greater New Orleans community that we won’t tolerate hate,” CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans Arnie Fielkow said.
Fielkow called it an encouraging expression of unity.
"This is my family. Anytime there's an attack on the Jewish community, that's an attack on my family, that's an attack on me," said New Orleans City Council Member Jason Williams.
A number of local and state leaders attended, including the New Orleans City Council and United States Representative Steve Scalise. Brossett says it was important the community’s elected officials stand up against hate.
“Let the world know, let our state know and let our region know we won’t tolerate it, discrimination of any sense. And that’s why I wanted to be here,” said Brossett.
The events of this past Shabbat are still raw in Jewish communities across the country.
"There's a lot of healing, first of all, that has to happen," said Fielkow.
Yet, Fielkow says a show of support like this one is a promising symbolic of what New Orleans is all about.
“A gumbo of wonderful people that won’t tolerate hatred and condemn the actions that occurred,” he said.