LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The Clark County Museum is on a mission to make sure the hundreds of items that were left at various memorials after the tragedy of 1 October are properly preserved and archived.
Letters fade, flowers wilt and eventually minds will go feeble, but for more than two dozen volunteers at the Clark County Museum the mission is in the remembrance.
Cynthia Sanford is the registrar for the museum. She explains the importance of the work that she and other volunteers have been doing.
"So that people 50 years from now, 100 years from now, we can look back and see what people did to react to this to deal with it. And what form that took,“ Sanford said.
These items are no longer on display and in the two years since the worst mass shooting in modern American history the demand to see the items at the museum has slowed.
And Sanford laments that the collection won't be truly complete without the narratives of family members, shooting victims and survivors.
"If you left something at one of the memorials and want to tell us your story. What you left. Why you thought it was important,” said Sanford. “We would love to hear from you.”
The process to do that is easy. You can follow this link on the museum's website: The October 1st Collection.
Over the last two years volunteers worked 8500 hours to catalog and categorize our collective grief.
"When you look back at history sure you see the dates and you see the important people, but it’s equally important to see everyday life,” she said.” And one of those aspects of everyday life is mourning and grieving."
Thousands of items were left near the Welcome to Las Vegas sign and near the shooting site at Las Vegas Boulevard and Reno in the wake of the 1 October shooting. Thousands more were sent to the city from all over the world.
"We also collected items that people sent to metro or to the Clark County Fire department and also that people just generally sent to the area,” said Sanford.
Gifts of comfort, like the dozens of stuffed animals and offerings of support and solidarity, like the many notes and signs are all telling the best part of the story. Recording the humanity of history and chronicling our capacity for compassion.
"So, we have this collection that is totally unique, and we will have it hopefully forever,” said Sanford.