Strangers Donate More Than $3 Million to Las Vegas Victims: 'Every Penny Will Be Put to Use'
More than $3 million in public donations have poured in to help victims of the worst mass shooting in modern American history.
A GoFundMe page established by Las Vegas Clark County Commission Chair Steve Sisolak set an initial goal of $500,000.
In a little more than a day, millions were collected, prompting Sisolak to raise the target to $3.5 million. As of Tuesday afternoon, more than $3.5 million had come in and Sisolak again raised the goal, this time to $4 million.
“I’m overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from the Las Vegas community & beyond,” Sisolak wrote in a Twitter post. “We need more donations and every penny will be put to use.
More than 500 people were injured, and at least 59 lost their lives, when Stephen Paddock opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel during a country music festival Sunday night.
Sisolak started the fund by pitching in $10,000 of his own money. The NFL’s Oakland Raiders, slated to move to Las Vegas next year, also gave $10,000.
Kid Rock and former professional boxer Mike Tyson each gave $10,000, along with electropop duo The Chainsmokers.
Jennifer Lopez took to Twitter to express her sympathy for the victims and to post a list of local sites where people could donate blood.
Authorities have publicly appealed for blood donors to help treat the hundreds of wounded who are hospitalized.
“This is terrorism plain and simple,” tweeted Lady Gaga. “Terror bares no gender or religion. Democrats & Republicans please unite now.”
Though celebrities did contribute to Sisolak’s site, the majority of donations came from everyday people who gave according to their ability — $25 here, $10 there. All in all, gifts ranged from $5 to hundreds of dollars.
More than 48,000 people have pledged money.
“We are praying for the families of the wounded and those families who have lost loved ones,” wrote Al Montreuil.
“Money does not heal any wounds; money does not revive any life," wrote Henry Li, who pledged $50. "We hope our small donation can ease some of the financial struggles to those who try to recover from this tragedy."