An Alberta woman who died in the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history was celebrated through music this weekend in Calgary.
Over 300 people turned out to the all-ages Tara Smith Roe Memorial Rock Show, which paid tribute to the late 34-year-old educational assistant from Okotoks, Alta., at the Palace Theatre on Saturday afternoon.
“On this exact day last year, we were saying goodbye to her at her funeral, so this year I wanted to do something to honour her,” said event organizer Samantha Lee.
“We just wanted to throw a really cool rock show because she would’ve loved this. We thought it’d be the best way to honour Tara and make today not so sad.”
Lee met Roe when they were kids growing up in Brandon, Man. They were close friends for more than 25 years.
The House Band from School of Rock Calgary played a set list of Roe’s favorite songs, including Green Day’s “When I Come Around” and Queen’s “We Are The Champions,” as the crowd swayed and bobbed.
Money was raised at the show for special needs children who Roe was close to.
“She just always talked about wanting to help this family but never got the opportunity to, so we just want to do that for her,” Lee said.
Audience members wiped away tears as Roe danced and smiled on screen. Her parents, sister and nephew came from Manitoba for the concert, and Roe’s husband and sons were also in attendance.