Portraits of Las Vegas Shooting Victims on Display As First Anniversary Approaches

The 58 victims who lost their lives while attending the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas will be publicly remembered just days before the one-year anniversary of the Oct. 1, 2017, shooting.

Through Oct. 19, Clark County and the Vegas Strong Resiliency Center will exhibit portraits created by artists from around the world of the 58 victims killed during the mass shooting, located in the Rotunda Gallery of the Clark County Government Center in downtown Las Vegas.

The selected artists for the project chose their subject based on news articles and photos published after the attack. Some of these artists live outside the United States: one from Las Vegas, two from Australia, five from Canada, and one each from Greece, Peru, and South Africa.

Some family members collaborated with the artists in the making of the portrait.

"Many of them have created quite a bond during this process. Some have become friends. Some even learned they're related, as was the case with our artist from South Africa, Kayla Beukes, and the family of Quinton Robbins," organizer Ellen Abramo said.

There's also an "Art of Healing Mural" created by students from Las Vegas Academy of the Arts and the local Guerilla Artz Foundation. Volunteers with the nonprofit Angels of Love, which is based in Orange County, crafted several stained-glass angels. 

The County Museum's 58 crosses have also been set out on tiered pedestals by the infamous "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign.

Clark County commissioners honored artists Abramo and her cousin Kortney Struempf for organizing the Las Vegas Portraits Project.

"Our goal with this project is to help build a bridge of hope and healing through art, and we appreciate Clark County's and the Vegas Strong Resiliency Center's partnership in this effort," Struempf said in a news release. 

Shortly after the attack, Abramo and Struempf organized the Las Vegas Portraits Project via Facebook, in search of volunteer artists willing to create a portrait of each victim. 

"Fifty-eight men and women lost their lives on 1 October, and they are more than a number. We want people to remember their faces, and when they do so, remember their friends and families," Abramo told NBC4. 

The portraits will be gifted to the families and on Oct.4 a special event will be held for the artists and families to meet face to face.

Emotional support will be provided at the memorial for those affected by the tragic event. There will be a resource table with trained volunteers and therapists from the American Red Cross. Therapy dogs from the non-profit Las Vegas-based Michael's Angel Paws, will also be present to provide emotional support.

The Clark County Government Center is open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 500 S. Grand Central Parkway in Las Vegas.

Officials encourage anyone who was present the night of the shooting to sign up for the Nevada Victims of Crime Program by the Oct. 1 deadline, which will help pay for expenses that may not be covered by insurance.

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