Capital Pride Festival goers remember Pulse victims

A survivor from the Pulse nightclub tragedy came to DC to raise awareness, leaving signs to remember the victims.

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) - Tomorrow marks one year since the Pulse Night Club massacre.

For some, that's the driving reason they came to this year's Capital Pride March and Festival here in D.C., including one man who defied death himself, but lost his love.

"I'm guess I'm here to spread awareness. This is my boyfriend who actually died at Pulse as well. Me and him went to the night club that night,” said Answai Bennett.

Bennett was also shot, twice in the hip area.

His shirt Sunday said, “In loving memory of Jason B. Josaphat.” Josaphat was a 19-year-old who had just graduated college. He was one of 49-people killed in the attack on June 12, 2016.

Sunday, you didn't have to look very hard to see how Pulse Night Club impacted the LGBTQ community on the eve of the one year anniversary.

RELATED: Man shares story of coming out, finding love at Capital Pride

Capital Pride goers left signs from the Sunday morning march by the festival and concert fence to remember the Orlando victims.

"Like I don't want them to win. Like to think that I'm afraid to come out here,” said Cheyenne Patane of Sterling, Virginia.

A lot of other signs targeted the new administration.

"You know, already there has been rollbacks on executive orders that gave rights to the trans-community,” said Ryan Bos, the Executive Director of the Capital Pride Alliance.

"Rights are up for the taking and I mean, it's entire lives, you know, it's important. You know, it's good to see so many people committed to the cause and to equality,” said Stephanie Dulin. She lives with her partner in D.C.

For Bennett, his love and spirit is what the Pulse Night Club shooter couldn't take away. 

"I wasn't supposed to walk but my whole first year was like training and just to try and walk again,” he said, as he walked through the Nation’s Capital.

© 2017 WUSA-TV


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