Shooting in Colorado Springs Leaves the LGBTQ+ Community Heartbroken


Family members gathering at a memorial to honor those who lost their lives in the shooting.

During the late hours of Nov 19, Colorado Springs Police were called because of an armed shooter attacking Club Q, an LGBTQ+ bar that was packed after hosting a birthday event for a drag queen, Wyatt Kent. In the six-minute altercation, five people were murdered, 17 were wounded, and a community was changed forever. 

Many people that were regulars to the club viewed their other patrons as a found family, such as Thomas James and Rich Fierro, veterans who had together disarmed the attacker and are credited with saving many lives in Club Q that night. Both have spoken out about wanting to protect the community and loved ones in Club Q, and urge the young members of the LGBTQ+ community to be brave. Others were deemed as heroes, as the community worked hard to support one another during this tragedy. 

Among the victims was Daniel Aston, the boyfriend of Wyatt Kent. Daniel and Wyatt had been dating for a while now, and Daniel even left a love letter for Wyatt meant to be read after the performance, but wasn’t read until a week after his death. Daniel and Wyatt had known they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together, and this tragedy tore them apart. 

The community of Club Q was very interconnected, and Wyatt was there when one of the other victims, Kelly Loving, died. Some believe that she saved his life. Other victims included: Wyatt’s childhood friend, Raymound Green, along with Ashley Paugh and Derrick Rump. 

The LGBTQ+ community in America has become the victim of many extreme tragedies in the last year (such as the Parental Rights in Education bill, 30+ anti-LGBTQ+ bills considered in Texas Law, and the 20 bomb threats that faced hospitals giving transgender people healthcare), which have induced fear. According to a GLAAD study, 48% of all LGBTQ+ responders are fearful of the current environment made for them in this country, and an astronomical 72% of transgender people live in constant fear. These statistics are mostly from before the Club Q shooting, and are likely to go up after this tragedy shocked the community. 

Although not much has been reported about the shooter, it has been revealed though that their name is Anderson Lee Aldrich. Their motive is currently unknown. 

The LGBTQ+ community is currently in outrage and in mourning for the five deaths, 17 injuries, and countless mental repercussions for the victims. However, through the shooting, the anti-LGBTQ+ bills, and countless acts of homophobia towards the community, Club Q is beginning to rebuild its community and safe haven. Club Q has links to donate to their efforts on their website

Members of the community continue to have hope, and love one another through these difficult times, which shows just how strong and persistent the LGBTQ+ community can be.