For Immediate Release

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Phone: (202) 463-2940

NAACP Statement On Massacre In Las Vegas

WASHINGTON - Yesterday, we awoke to news of more tragedy. In the late hours of Sunday, October 1, 2017, a gunman opened fire on a music festival crowd in Las Vegas, killing at least 58 people and leaving more than 500 others injured. The NAACP released the following statement to what has now become the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history:

From Leon Russell, NAACP Board Chairman:

“Our thoughts and prayers remain with the victims of the Las Vegas shooting, and we extend our heartfelt condolences to the families, friends and loved ones of those who lost their lives to this senseless act of violence. Too often in this country, we awake to news of more tragedy and terror at the hands hateful gunmen. We must not let ourselves become desensitized to the fact that people just like us – husbands, brothers, children, wives, sisters, friends – have been wounded and killed simply for being within reach of a gunman.”

From Derrick Johnson, Interim President, and CEO:


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“As we recover from what is now the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, we must turn our thoughts and prayers into action. Use our grief as a healing force. Come together in solidarity and demand a safer nation for our children. Call upon our governing bodies to take action and stop this dreadful gun violence epidemic.  Let this serve as a turning point for our country.

“We continue to call for practical gun-control, and urge members and supporters to reach out to their elected officials. We must emerge from our grief not as weakened or numb, but as survivors who rallied to make our communities safe from guns and those who wish to cause us harm.”

I was in Las Vegas last night during the shooting for a speaking engagement.  I was asleep at the time of this tragedy, my family watched the news and prayed for my safety. Thankfully, I was out of harm’s way. The sad reality is none of us are exempt, all of our lives can at any moment can be touched by tragedy.  We pray for the victims and their families.”


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Founded Feb. 12. 1909, the NAACP is the nation's oldest, largest and most widely recognized grassroots–based civil rights organization. Its more than half-million members and supporters throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.

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