Greg Zanis felt compelled to take action after a shooting in Orlando, Florida, took the lives of 49 innocent people at Pulse Night Club, leaving countless others injured.
The retired carpenter built 49 wooden crosses and drove from Chicago to place them in front of the Orlando Health Medical Center:
But what’s happened since then is just as chilling — people started writing messages of love on them:
Children are laying flowers at the foot of the crosses…
And drawing flowers on them, too:
…loved ones are attaching heart-shaped balloons and flags:
— Eagle 8 WFLA (@8_plamison) June 20, 2016
What once looked like this:
— Carey (@ccoddcbs4news) June 16, 2016
…slowly turned into this:
— Eryka (@ErykaNews) June 16, 2016
And now looks like this:
— Andrew O'Brien (@aobrien7) June 19, 2016
— Victoria Brownworth (@VABVOX) June 19, 2016
Zanis has been building memorial crosses for decades, delivering more than 15,000 crosses to crime scenes to date, including Columbine High School and Newtown, Connecticut.
Each cross is as unique as the next, celebrating the 49 beautiful lives taken too soon on that fateful day.
And while they might not be with us in the physical sense, the hundreds of messages have no doubt provided unimaginable support for those who lost a loved one in the tragedy.