May 14, 2022 is a day that forever changed the lives of people across Buffalo, and across the nation. Today marks the one-year anniversary of the devastating mass shooting that occurred at Tops Friendly Supermarket. We express our deepest condolences to the families who lost their loved ones in this horrific act of violence.
Among the victims was Aaron Salter Junior, a retired Buffalo Police Officer who had served the community for almost three decades. Aaron was working as a security guard at the supermarket when he courageously put himself in harm’s way to protect others during the shooting. He lost his life to protect others, and his bravery and sacrifice will not be forgotten.
The 100 Club of Buffalo had the privilege of honoring Aaron Salter Junior with a hero award at our dinner last month. Aaron’s courageous actions along with the efforts of Buffalo Police Officers Anthony D’Augustino, Christine Ihle, and Ann Devaney, prevented further harm and tragedy from taking place. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to all the heroes who risked their lives to save others that day.
Despite their efforts, ten people, all African American, were killed in the racially motivated mass shooting.The victims included mothers and grandmothers, a church deacon, a community activist, a retired police officer working security at the store and a father picking up a birthday cake for his 3-year-old son.
We mourn the loss of ten innocent lives and must continue to honor their memory and support their grieving families. We remember and pay tribute to Roberta Drury, Margus D. Morrison, Andre Mackneil, Aaron Salter, Geraldine Talley, Celestine Chaney, Heyward Patterson, Katherine Massey, Pearl Young, and Ruth Whitfield.