Florida Gov. Orders State Flags to Half-Staff In Honor of the Victims of the Pulse Nightclub Massacre

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has declared June 12 “Pulse Remembrance Day.”

He’s asking all residents of Florida to pause for a moment of silence and directed all state flags in Florida to be lowered to half-staff.

Orlando Florida – August 9th 2016, Pulse Nightclub Memorial: Orlando Florida Pulse nightclub massacre memorial planned. Shutterstock

Today @FLCaseyDeSantis and I joined the LGBTQ and Hispanic communities in Orlando to pay our respects as our state and nation mourn and honor the precious lives that were lost three years ago at Pulse Nightclub.

On June 12, 2016, Omar Mateen, a 29-year-old security guard, killed 49 people and wounded 53 others in a mass shootinginside Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, United States. Orlando Police Department officers shot and killed him after a three-hour standoff.

In a 9-1-1 call made shortly after the shooting began, Mateen swore allegiance to the leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and the LevantAbu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and said the U.S. killing of Abu Waheeb in Iraq the previous month “triggered” the shooting. He later told a negotiator he was “out here right now” because of the American-led interventions in Iraq and in Syriaand that the negotiator should tell the United States to stop the bombing. The incident was deemed a terrorist attack by FBIinvestigators.

Pulse was hosting a “Latin Night,” and most of the victims were Hispanic. It is the deadliest incident of violence against LGBT people in U.S. history and the deadliest terrorist attack in the U.S. since the September 11 attacks in 2001. At the time, it was the deadliest mass shooting by a single shooter in U.S. history, being surpassed by the Las Vegas shooting a year later. By June 2018, the FBI had declined to classify the incident as an anti-gay hate crime, as evidence suggested that Mateen had scouted several different targets before choosing Pulse, and that he did not know it was a gay nightclub.[1][2]


In his memorandum, DeSantis asked all Florida residents to pause for a moment of silence at 9 a.m. on Wednesday.

Wednesday will mark the third anniversary of the Pulse Nightclub shooting, where 49 people lost their life in Orlando.

The proclamation reads:

“WHEREAS, on June 12, 2016, 49 innocent lives were taken when an ISIS-inspired terrorist targeted our state and the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando; and

“WHEREAS, we honor the lives of Stanley Almodovar III, Amanda Alvear, Oscar A. Aracena-Montero, Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala, Alejandro Barrios Martinez, Martin Benitez Torres, Antonio D. Brown, Darryl R. Burt II, Jonathan A. Camuy Vega, Angel L. Candelario-Padro, Simon A. Carrillo Fernandez, Juan Chevez-Martinez, Luis D. Conde, Cory J. Connell, Tevin E. Crosby, Franky J. Dejsus Velazquez, Deonka D. Drayton, Mercedez M. Flores, Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz, Juan R. Guerroero, Paul T. Henry, Frank Hernandez, Miguel A. Honorato, Javier Jorge-Reyes, Jason B. Josaphat, Eddie J. Justice, Anthony L. Laureano Disla, Christopher A. Leinonen, Brenda L. Marquez McCool, Jean C. Mendez Perez, Akyra Monet Murray, Kimberly Morris, Jean C. Nieves Rodriguez, Luis O Ocasio-Capo, Geraldo A. Ortiz-Jimenez, Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera, Joel Rayon Paniagua, Enrique L. Rios Jr., Juan P. Rivera Velazquez, Yilmary Rodirguez Solivan, Christopher J. Sanfeliz, Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado, Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez, Edward Sotomayor Jr., Shane E. Tomlinson, Leroy Valetnin Fernandez, Luis S. Vielma, Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon, Jeral A. Wright; and

“WHEREAS, the State of Florida mourns the loss of life and ensures that the victims of this senseless tragedy will never be forgotten; and

“WHEREAS, the entire state of Florida has come together to stand boldly with Orlando and the Central Florida community against terrorism; and

“WHEREAS, we are grateful for the extraordinary efforts of our first responders who were on the scene within minutes to provide assistance to the injured and victims of the shooting; and

“WHEREAS, we should express our profound sympathy to the families who lost loved ones during this tragic incident and remember that Floridians are resilient and will remain united even during the darkest times of our State’s history; and

“NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ron DeSantis, Governor of the State of Florida, by virtue of the power and authority vested in me by 4 U.S.C. § 7(m), as amended on June 29, 2007, and the laws and Constitution of the State of Florida, do hereby:

  1. Acknowledge June 12th as Pulse Remembrance Day in Florida in recognition of the 49 innocent lives lost in the horrific attack on Pulse Nightclub in 2016; and
  2. Establish June 12th as a day of remembrance to pay tribute to the 49 innocent lives lost at Pulse Nightclub; and
  3. Ask all residents of Florida to pause for a moment of silence at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, June 12, 2019; and
  4. Direct all State flags in Florida to be lowered to half-staff from sunrise to sunset on Wednesday, June 12, 2019.
Victims of the Pulse Nightclub massacre.

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