A community celebrates the reopening of Cafe Racer
Inexplicable horrors from Washington to Colorado to Norway make the reopening of a Seattle cafe all the more important.
Seattle Times Editorial
The tenacity of spirit and community affection behind the reopening Friday of Cafe Racer in Seattle's University District is a balm for the pain stirred by the horrors of Aurora, Colo.'s mass shooting earlier in the day.
Weeks before the murder and mayhem at a midnight movie premiere in suburban Denver, another lone gunman had opened fire in Cafe Racer, shooting five people, killing four. A fifth person was killed in a carjacking by the shooter, who eventually took his own life.
Beneath these layers of bloody tragedy were stories of personal courage that saved lives in the cafe, and provided comfort to the gravely wounded.
Cafe Racer reopens forever changed by an act of madness, but more fundamentally transformed by a loving response from patrons and supporters. A fresh paint job outside, and renovations to the interior and more paint provide a fresh start.
The doors reopened with volunteer help and generous contributions from the community. Cafe Racer responded in kind with caferacerlove.org, an online gathering place soliciting donations for the victims and their families. Also featured were links for counseling, and fundraising events.
A murderous assault could not destroy the web of community and personal connections nurtured and sustained by the cafe.
This triumph of the human spirit celebrated in espresso, art, music and fresh paint is deeply reassuring in trying times.