ROCHESTER, N.Y. — At the Aenon Missionary Baptist Church on Genesee Street in Rochester, a vigil and prayer service was held to offer support to their sister city, following the tragedy at the Tops on Jefferson Avenue.
As the 10 victims were remembered aloud in church, their names felt almost at home as many of the speakers shared their personal connections to Buffalo.
"It's a close-knit community between Buffalo and Rochester many of us have families in both cities and many of us are familiar with the area where the murder took place, I've been past that store many times but by the grace of god it could have been any one of us at any time so we wanted to share this moment of grief, bereavement with the city of Buffalo," said Aenon Pastor Jonathan J.H. McReynolds.
Like sisters looking out for each other, faith and local leaders offered words of strength and anger about the hate and racism that fueled the Buffalo attack, knowing that it could have been their neighborhood, the historically African American 19th ward.
"We also want to send a message that is individual was dangerous and demented in that had it not been for Buffalo it could have been Rochester as we know," Mayor Evans said.