Melbourne Unites To Transform Bourke St Mall Into A Floral Tribute

Contributor: Chris Woods
Following the rampage that killed four and injured 31 pedestrians in the Bourke St Mall yesterday, tributes have begun flowing from seemingly every corner of the Melbourne community.
And while police wait to interview the person reportedly behind all of it, 26-year-old Jimmy Gargasoulas, once he comes out of surgery, we’re in turn seeing some of the best of humanity.
From members of Melbourne’s Jewish community crowdfunding to support the family of the ten-year-old girl who died, to emergency groups organising both videos and on-the-spot counselling for people recovering from the traumatic incident, and even to organisers of sporting events such as the Australian Open and the Big Bash League holding minutes of silence, the public response has been overwhelmingly kind, supportive and distinctly unselfish.

And while they might not be tributes per se, It’s also heartening to find out more about the people who attempted to help as the event unfurled.
Even on top of emergency services, there’s the woman Gargasoulas took hostage, Akiir Muo, attempting to talk him out of the police chase, an as-yet-unidentified man trying to stop Gargasoulas with a bat, and members of the public reportedly rushed to help the injured before paramedics could arrive.

Of course, not everyone has handled the situation this well.
As we reported yesterday, David Leyonhjelm was quick to turn the incident into some snide attack on gun laws, and Pauline Hanson has naturally lead the Islamophobic bandwagon, claiming that this all showed cause for her proposed burqa ban despite the two issues having absolutely nothing to do with each other.
Contrary to Hanson’s knee-jerk reaction, police have stressed that Gargasoulas had zero known terrorist activity and was instead likely motivated by a history of drug-abuse, family violence and psychological problems.
But the Hansons and Leyonhjelms of the world aside, the overwhelming response to this tragedy has been nothing short of heartwarming. As Fred Rogers’ would say, while quoting his mother, “look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.

Source: Twitter.
Photo: Getty / Wayne Taylor.