As they deal with aftermath of tragedy in their backyard, Orlando residents lend a helping hand

ORLANDO, Fla. (WRIC) — In the wake of the tragedy, there is an outpouring of generosity and support from residents in the Orlando community. Not everyone knows or can help a victim, but they reach out just the same hoping to make a difference in small, sincere ways.

For Orlando resident Ashlee Smith, lending a helping hand during a time of tragedy was instinctive.

“We felt the need to get out in the community to do whatever we could, so without really knowing what our plan as we just gathered as many supplies as we could,” she told 8News Reporter Juan Conde.

E81D358BDA4A47F291351AAEC0C5085CThose supplies included portable chargers for people crowded outside the police tape.

“To support the community as well as the law enforcement community,” Smith added.

Kevin Green let people use his hardware store bathroom and also helped feed the hungry crowd.

“I asked different people, such as Target, Publix, McDonalds, Flippers Pizza, Arby’s, Red Lobster … Every single person we asked gave us stuff,” he explained.

The generosity was overwhelming.

“There was no question, limit, just call when you need more,” Green said. “What does this say about your town? I think it just shows how people are coming together.”



Another resident is making 8News especially proud; Dennis Bass used to live on Monument Avenue in Richmond and run an antique shop in Carytown.

Now living in Orlando, Bass is offering folks a chance to ease their emotional burdens with prayer on the street.

“I’m praying for people. You know, the world’s hurting, a community’s hurting,” resident Dennis Bass said. “It’s a wound to all of us, that someone can kill 50 people. What kind of hatred is that? I have to give it to God, because it would really drive me crazy, I think. It’s just sad.”

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