WESTMORELAND, Tenn. (WKRN) – “Westmoreland Strong” is more than just a slogan for Ryan Butcher and the staff at Westmoreland Care and Rehab.
“We picked the color pink for Sapphire,” said Butcher, quality of life director. “It was her favorite color. We just wanted to do something for the victims.”
It’s the image being printed on t-shirts to help remember 12-year-old Sapphire McGlothin-Pee and the six other victims found dead in a gruesome mass killing in April.
“We’re all hurt,” Butcher said. “We’ve all been really upset about it.”
“As soon as we heard, everybody kind of felt like they had to do something,” said Michelle Kelleher, admissions and marketing director.
The rehab center raised $1,600 Friday, selling $5 plates of food as part of a fundraiser to help cover the costs of the victims’ funerals.
“It’s a way to do something that’s good out of something that’s bad,” Kelleher said.
Fifty pink t-shirts that read ‘Westmoreland Strong’ have already been pre-ordered. Proceeds will go towards funeral expenses.
“As long as we can keep raising the money, we’ll sell them as long as we can,” Butcher said.
Community support has been pouring in all week.
“We’re not used to something like this happening,” said Caroline Moss who helped organize a fundraiser Sunday afternoon.
Volunteers sold food outside of Fred’s Super Dollar, raising more than $1,200 in three hours.
“For this to happen to them, their lives will never ever be the same,” Moss said.
It’s a shockwave community members say has changed their small town forever.
“It’s been horrible,” Kelleher said.