ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Two months after the massacre of 49 people at a gay nightclub in Orlando, residents and officials say the community is coming together in unprecedented solidarity.
The rainbow flag associated with gay pride seems to have become the area’s unofficial symbol. Stores are selling out of “(hash)OrlandoUnited” T-shirts with a rainbow heart.
There traditionally has been little sense of sense of shared history among most Orlando residents since two-thirds come from outside the state.
Elements that often unite communities — sports teams, food culture, deep neighborhood roots — are young or nonexistent. Many would say Orlando’s modern existence dates back only 45 years to Disney World’s opening.
But residents and leaders say the collective mourning has tightened Orlando bonds and created the strongest sense of community in recent memory.
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