NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WRKN) — As the war in Israel continues into its fourth day, an estimated 700 people gathered at the Gordon Jewish Community Center in Nashville to pray, mourn, and show support for Israel.
The solidarity event, organized by the Jewish Federation of Greater Nashville, had an overflow crowd of Jewish and non-Jewish residents of Davidson County in addition to Gov. Bill Lee (R-Tennessee), Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti, multiple Metro Nashville councilmembers, and members of the Tennessee General Assembly.
“We have seen once again the persecution of the nation of Israel, but we will see once again the steadfast resolve of the people of this state and this nation to stand alongside the Jewish people and the nation of Israel,” Lee told the crowd.
The event included messages from the Consulate General of Israel to the Southeastern United States and Israeli citizens with connections to Nashville.
The night concluded with a traditional Jewish prayer of mourning and a singing of the Israeli national anthem.
There was a visible law enforcement presence at the JCC with a handful of uniformed officers outside the building as well as a couple inside the auditorium.
Before the event, Lee told reporters his administration has reached out to every synagogue in the state to remind them of his support and see if they have any needs.
Metro Nashville Police Chief John Drake released a statement on Monday stating his team is, “in contact with leaders of Jewish institutions in our city.”
Drake went on to say, “We are working closely with them to offer our support, presence, and guidance, while we reiterate our commitment to their safety.”
Flags over the Tennessee State Capitol will be flow at half-staff until Friday in remembrance of the Israeli and American lives lost during the attacks, according to Lee’s post on social media.