News for North Texas
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

'Dallas Is Hurting:' Outside Police Memorial Service, Visitors Support, Lean On Each Other

Those who didn’t have a ticket to the memorial service honoring five, slain Dallas police officers still gathered outside the Meyerson Symphony Center in a show of support.

That fellowship on the sidewalk was exactly what many North Texans were hoping to find.

[Click on the photo above for a slideshow featuring scenes from outside the memorial service.]  

There were hundreds of people across the street from the symphony hall holding homemade signs, waving Texas flags or in the case of Teague Egan, giving out free hugs.

“Every little thing we can do to help, we need to be there to do," he says.

Egan is part of a group called “The Kindness Crew.” Members travel the country in a bus, where they also sleep, carrying out random acts of kindness. They also visit communities in the grip of grief. Egan and his pals drove 28 hours from Rhode Island to be in Dallas Tuesday.

“We pride ourselves on being there for people and in places where we’re needed the most and right now Dallas is hurting," he says.

Looking For Support

The people who call Dallas home are hurting too. Oak Cliff resident Dhyana Colony says that’s why she came out to the Meyerson--- to be close to Tuesday’s service, to connect with her neighbors.

“I was in New York City during 9/11 and while the two tragedies are of different proportions, it is still really important to come out and support your community," she says.

Something echoed by many who gathered outside the symphony hall. LC Malone and his wife drove to Dallas from San Augustine, a town in east Texas near Nacogdoches.

“I feel this is a terrible tragedy and I just wanted to be a part of it, I wanted to show my support," he says. "So we would have been here even if the president wasn’t coming.”

Looking For Change

Malone says he feels for the fallen officers and their loved ones.

He also sees a problem with law enforcement in America. There’s been a string of high profile cases of police officers fatally shooting black men—most recently in Louisiana and Minnesota.  Malone thinks a small percentage of police officers are getting away with violence.

“If the criminal justice system would actually prosecute and convict those officers, then no one would have anything to fuss about," he says. "We wouldn’t be here now.”

As officers poured out of the memorial service and into the street a grateful crowd was there to meet them. Strangers shook hands and cops posed for pictures with children. The crowd was in mourning, sure. But mixed in with the pain, was hope. Just ask Dhyana Colony.

“What a horrible reason for community to come together," she says, "but kind of beautiful at the same time, right?”

A fitting coda to an emotional day.

Courtney Collins has been working as a broadcast journalist since graduating from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University in 2004. Before coming to KERA in 2011, Courtney worked as a reporter for NPR member station WAMU in Washington D.C. While there she covered daily news and reported for the station’s weekly news magazine, Metro Connection.