Monterey Park senior center opens as crisis response hub for victims' families: How you can help

Meanwhile, GoFundMe has launched a website of verified fundraisers to help.

ByLeanne Suter KABC logo
Monday, January 23, 2023
Here's how to help victims of Monterey Park mass shooting
As a Monterey Park senior center transforms into a crisis response hub for those impacted, GoFundMe has launched a website of verified fundraisers to help.

MONTEREY PARK, Calif. -- The community of Monterey Park is feeling heartache, grief and anger after a mass shooting at a ballroom dance hall left 10 people dead and 10 others injured, but they're coming together to help the families of the victims.

The Langley Senior Citizen Center on Emerson Avenue has turned into a crisis response center with the help of state and federal agencies for families and friends.

On Sunday afternoon, officials told Eyewitness News about five families have stopped by to speak with counselors to get support.

"It was comforting and just cathartic just to talk about it because, in between my husband and I, we didn't really process it too much, so it was good for us," said Monterey Park resident Lenora Hall.

The shooting late Saturday in the predominantly Asian American community cast a shadow over the New Years festivities and sent a wave of fear through Asian American communities in the Los Angeles area.

The suspect was identified as 72-year-old Huu Can Tran. Speaking at an evening news conference, L.A. County Sheriff Robert Luna said the motive remained unclear for the attack. Luna did not have the exact ages of the victims but said they all appeared to be over 50. Seven of the wounded people remained in the hospital, he said.

Monterey Park is a small community of approximately 61,000 people, and it's a predominantly Asian community. The city was hosting the Monterey Park Lunar New Year Festival this weekend, marking the beginning of the Chinese lunar calendar. The annual two-day street festival is widely attended, with previous celebrations drawing as many as 100,000 daily visitors, according to the city. Saturday's events were scheduled to finish at 9 p.m.

One couple stopped by Sunday, saying they couldn't find a dear friend who planned on going to the dance at the ballroom. They feared she was one of the victims, but while they were at the center, they were notified that stayed home.

"I'm very thankful," they said. "I'm very sad for the victims. It's crazy, I don't know what's going with the country. There's a lot of sick people."

The city of Monterey Park has since canceled all Lunar New Year events at the senior center to focus on helping those impacted by the shooting. Some people have even been dropping off food like traditional Chinese Lunar New Year treats to help bring a bit of peace to those impacted.

"I think everybody's afraid," said Stephanie Tang. "I mean we received text messages, like 'Hey, don't go to the festival,' even though it's canceled already, but people are so afraid right now just to think that this would happen so close to a time of celebration."

Meanwhile, GoFundMe has launched a hub of verified fundraisers to help and is continually being updated with verified accounts.

You can donate via the Monterey Park Shooting: How To Help hub.

The link stretches across all social media channels and encourages donations to victims and their families to who need help.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.