NATIONAL NEWS

Buffalo supermarket to reopen 2 months after mass shooting

Jul 14, 2022, 6:04 AM | Updated: 2:33 pm
FILE: Police and FBI agents continue their investigation of the shooting at Tops market on May 15, ...
FILE: Police and FBI agents continue their investigation of the shooting at Tops market on May 15, 2022 in Buffalo, New York. A gunman opened fire at the store, killing ten people and wounding another three. The attack was believed to be motivated by racial hatred. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — The Buffalo supermarket where 10 Black people were killed by a white gunman is set to reopen its doors to the public Friday, two months after the racist attack.

A moment of silence and prayer will be held Thursday at Tops Friendly Market to honor the victims, employees and community impacted by the May 14 mass shooting, with a ceremonial reopening of the overhauled store before customers return Friday, the company said.

Ten Black people were killed when a then-18-year-old gunman wearing body armor and carrying a semi-automatic rifle opened fire on weekend shoppers and employees. Three people were wounded in the massacre.

Investigators say the shooter was motivated by white supremacist beliefs and researched the demographics of the predominantly Black neighborhood where the market is located with the intent of killing as many Black people as possible. He drove for more than three hours from his home in Conklin, New York, to carry out the attack, authorities said.

The decision to reopen, rather than relocate, the store has been met with mixed emotions in the East Buffalo neighborhood that, beset by high poverty, fought for years to get a grocery store. Since opening in 2003, the Tops location remains the only supermarket in the immediate area. Its closure in the wake of the shooting forced many residents to take buses to other locations or rely on stopgap measures like neighborhood giveaways to access fresh food.

“We must go on,” said Tops employee Rosalie Bishop, who has worked at the store for 12 years. She wants the store open again — and never for a moment considered not returning to work with colleagues who she considers family.

“The store is there for a reason. The store is still there for a reason,” said Bishop, 58, who was on her way to work when the shooting happened and said she’s still processing her near miss. “The people will come back. They might not come today or tomorrow, but they will come back.”

Other neighbors say reopening isn’t the best path forward.

Suggestions to local media and on social networks include turning the site into a park or recreational center that would bring the community together, or having several supermarkets that are more dispersed throughout Buffalo’s East Side.

Some simply can’t imagine entering a store where such terrible events took place.

The shooter, Payton Gendron, was arrested just outside the store’s front entrance. He is charged with numerous counts, including federal hate crime charges punishable by the death penalty, and has pleaded not guilty to state and federal charges.

Authorities say the gunman was motivated by white supremacist beliefs, including a baseless conspiracy theory about a plot to diminish the influence of white people. He chronicled his plans for months in an online diary, authorities said, and livestreamed the attack via a helmet camera.

Mayor Byron Brown said he was apprehensive while first touring the remodeled store but believes the overhaul will be helpful to customers.

“I realize that not everyone will feel comfortable returning to the store,” he said in a statement, adding that he is encouraging other retailers to serve the area.

“None of us will ever forget the cruel, racist attack,” Brown said. The reopening is a step toward healing, he said.

Bishop already has returned to the store to help prepare. Her first day went smoothly, but a security drill with flashing lights on the second day sent her home, shaken, mid-shift. Still, she said she is not afraid for her safety.

“I just want peace. I just want peace,” Bishop said. “It’ll never go back to the way it was. We’re not looking for the way it was. But peace.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

National News

FILE PHOTO...
Tina Burnside, Kiely Westhoff and Amya Henry, CNN

Suspect in the shooting deaths of 4 people in Ohio was captured in Kansas

A suspect in the shooting deaths of four people at multiple sites outside of Dayton Ohio, has been arrested, police said.
1 day ago
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) speaks at news conference following the weekly Senate D...
Clare Foran and Ali Zaslav, CNN

Senate begins ‘vote-a-rama’ to advance Democrats’ sweeping health and climate bill

The Senate on Saturday voted to advance Democrats' sweeping health care and climate bill toward final passage, putting the package on track to pass the chamber as soon as this weekend.
1 day ago
FILE - Police responding to a scene....
Associated Press

Alabama town disbands police department over racist text

A racist text message sent by a police officer has prompted officials in a small Alabama town to disband their police department and fire the police chief and assistant chief.
1 day ago
The US and Indian militaries will hold high-altitude exercises in Auli in the Indian state of Uttar...
Vedika Sud, Barbara Starr, Sahar Akbarzai and Kathleen Magramo, CNN

US to take part in military exercise near India’s disputed border with China

The United States is to take part in a joint military exercise with India less than 62 miles from their disputed border with China.
1 day ago
Barricades block off a portion of Elm Street in Laurel, Nebraska, where four people were found dead...
Rebekah Riess, Raja Razek and Jarrod Wardwell, CNN

Arrest in quadruple homicide after victims are found dead in 2 house fires in a small Nebraska town

The suspect in a Nebraska quadruple homicide where the victims were found dead in two separate house fires has been hospitalized with burns over much of his body.
1 day ago
Some of the women who were hanged during the Salem witch trials have been memorialized. (Stephan Sa...
Scottie Andrew, CNN

The last Salem witch has been exonerated, thanks to an eighth-grade teacher and her students

It's never too late to right a historical wrong -- even if that restoration of justice comes nearly 330 years later.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Photo: Storyblocks...
Blue Stakes of Utah 811

Blue Stakes of Utah 811: 5 Reasons To Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard

Call before you dig. Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries or broken utilities just because you didn't call Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Days of...
Days of '47 Rodeo

TRIVIA: How well do you know your rodeo? Take this quiz before you go to the Days of ’47!

The Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo presented by Zions Bank is a one-of-a-kind Gold Medal Rodeo being held July 20-23, 25 at 7:30 PM. The Days of ’47 Rodeo How well do you know your rodeo trivia? Take the quiz to test your know-all before heading out to the Days of ’47 Rodeo at the […]
cyber security through multi factor authentication setup...
Les Olson IT

How multi factor authentication setup helps companies stay safe

Multi factor authentication (MFA) setup is an important security measure that every company should implement for their workers. It’s also wise to install it for your personal and home accounts.
...
Lighting Design

Check out these stunning lamps with stained glass shades

Lamps with stained glass shades are statement pieces that are more than simply aesthetic. They also meet a functional requirement: to light up a room.
Address Bar of internet browser shows internet access...
AARP Utah

Utah voters 50+ support increased access to Internet

The AARP surveyed Utah voters aged 50 plus about internet access and if they support the expansion of broadband, especially in rural areas currently lacking it.
Buffalo supermarket to reopen 2 months after mass shooting