On June 12, 2016, people across the world woke up to devastating news. In the wee hours of the morning, a man had opened fire in Pulse, a popular gay nightclub in Orlando, killing 49 innocent people. The majority of the victims were Latinx, most of them of Puerto Rican descent, and had been attending the venue’s “Latin Night” festivities.
In a haunting tribute marking the one year anniversary of the Pulse tragedy, Dear World, an organization that is part business, photo project and social experiment, photographed and interviewed 25 survivors, first responders and relatives of those who were killed.
“I asked them to tell stories that only they could tell, without any prompts or questions,” said CEO and Founder of Dear World, Robert Fogarty. “Whether it’s a positive or negative memory, the act of remembrance matters. They’re a time to reflect.”
He notes that not all of the stories involve details of what happened at Pulse, with some instead focusing on life before that fateful night.
“My hope is that the audience sees that the survivors, family and first responders are just like you and me,” said Fogarty. “I don’t want you to see them as characters of a tragic story, I want you to see them as people.”
You can see some of the photos below and read the the stories of those profiled at Dear World.