NEW YORK: The shooting of Indian American IT professionals Srinivas Kuchibhotla and Alok Madasani by a White racist, Adam Purinton, which led to the death of Kuchibhotla and grievous injuries to Madasani, at a bar in Olathe, Kansas, on Thursday, has shocked people in the United States and India. An exclusive gofundme page for Kuchibhotla has raised more than $360,000, in less than 24 hours. A separate gofundme page for Kuchibhotla and Madasani has raised more than $54,000; and a separate fundraiser for Ian Grillot, the brave American hero who stood up for the two victims, got shot in the process and is recovering in hospital, has raised more than $172,000.
Here are some reactions from various sources:
“This bar is about 5 miles from my home. It is not that remote but affluent suburb in Johnson county which is one of the safest and Fortune Best Places to live in. It is half a mile from Garmin world headquarters. It is their usual spot to meet and at 7:15 pm is not that late. Bar was packed with KU basketball fans who are students and young and good hangout place. Unfortunately there was one crazy guy and caused a horrible incident. What I mean to say is, we are seeing things at places where we haven’t seen before in last many years. I lived here for 17 years and never heard or faced explicit racial bias where the city of Overland Park and Olathe have Sprint and Garmin with 90% of population being engineers and a very diversified new economy population. All perception changed overnight”: Anonymous, on WhatsApp.
“We know them as the Jameson guys. They are super nice guys. They would sit, have a cigarette, have a few drinks and pay their tab and leave”: Garret Bohnen, bartender at Austins Bar & Grill, on Srinivas Kuchibhotla and Alok Madasani, as quoted in The Kansas City Star.
“My brother was the third victim. My deepest condolences to the family- I’m so very sorry for your loss. My brother wishes he could have done more for your family. Keeping everyone in my prayers”: Maggie Grillot – sister of Ian Grillot, who tried to stop the shooter.
“We salute 24-year-old Ian Grillot, who is a hero in the great American tradition but whose actions should not remain unsung. Thank you Ian and we know there are many more like you”: Shekar Narasimhan, Democratic strategist, as quoted in The Hindustan Times.
“Thank you for standing up to hate! I hope people follow your example. You literally took a bullet for a stranger because they were being persecuted. You are a shining example of humanity”: Jean Cumbie, on Ian Grillot’s heroism.
“This just makes me sick. One goes out with friends for an enjoyable evening & gets this. I have no words — except my heart aches. It aches really bad. A young life gone for no reason. My prayers are with his wife & family. I have lived in Olathe since 1977 and there are a lot of wonderful people here. This is one of those instances where one does not know what to say. My daughter has worked for Austins for many years and at all three locations. So many people pay the price and that being this young man and his family first and foremost plus Austins and their family of employees and customers. It will take a lot of prayers & time for healing. God Bless everyone”: Sue Duroche.
“As a former engineer myself who has worked with many very friendly and hard working Indian engineers over the years I can’t help but feel so badly for this man and his family. My heart goes out to you! I’m horrified at this shooter’s racism since I have never met an Indian native that I didn’t like. Praying for Srini and his family”: Karen Manherz Powell.
“I’m so sorry. I don’t even know what America is anymore. There is nothing to say. I’m just sorry”: Jessica Conifer.
“Our deepest condolences. This should have never happened. Makes me sad and worried about this wonderful country that we call home now. When the mere color of our skin is a cause for violence…it’s shameful. I don’t know Srini or Alok or Ian, but I am saddened by how this shameful act of a racist moron has affected the lives of so many. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and with Alok and his family and Ian and his family. May God look after you all and all of us”: Charlotte Afonso.
“Praying for you and your family. I’m so incredibly sorry for your loss. Srinivas was always so nice and happy. He even made sure he talked to my kids. He was such a kind man. Today has been very hard for me and many tears have been shed for his sweet soul. He is already so missed by so many people”: Tiffiny Gettert Nordeen.
“Please be brave. I know it will be hard. One racist doesn’t define America”: Chandran Palanisamy.
“My heart breaks. Sri was such a beautiful spirit. Prayers for his family in their time of loss. He will be missed”: Raven Clarissa Rowe.
“…Though I don’t know them I cannot help but be moved by this horrific and needless tragedy. I cannot wrap my brain around the sentiments that led to this! America is a country of immigrants and in this diversity we are made stronger and better. May his family find some small amount of peace and solace in knowing how much he was obviously loved and respected by those who knew him: Donna Fromnola
“What we don’t need in our country are people like the murderer”: Richard Amey.
“The ‘Shining city on the hill’ has become the Death Star”: Jerry Schmitt.
“I think the Indian community should be more active politically…we should a strong voice to cut down the gun violence….remember, there are about 3 million Indians here, the most prone population to hate crimes because of just being brown…!!”: Varun Malayala.
“I am so very sorry for your loss. We are all responsible for removing this hatred from our country. May you be comforted in knowing that we all mourn with you”: Laurie Sue.
“Hate hasn’t done a darn thing in this world but cause pain, discord and deaths. To those of you who believe that your skin color, religion, sexual orientation makes you superior to others, I say, shame on you! REST IN PEACE SRINU”: Debbie Willam.
“The climate of hate in this country is unacceptable. My deepest condolences on your loss. We must do better”: Letty Bell Hawthorne.
“Srinivas Kuchibhotla, My deepest condolences. I remember the day when after 9-11 S. Balbir Sodhi was killed by an American man of mistaken identity. I will keep you in my prayers”: Charan Singh.
“My son-in-law is Indian. The description of Mr. Kuchibhotla is exactly like him. I worry about him. My prayers are with the family of Mr. Kuchibhotla. Things like this should never happen”: Nick Theheat.
“I am SO sorry. I don’t know what is happening to my country. I’m just so, so sorry”: Jolie Nelson Wiggins.
“The murder of Kuchibhotla is the first reported bias-motivated fatality in the US after the bitter presidential election”: Hindu American Foundation.
(Some reactions are culled from comments on the gofundme pages for Srinivas Kuchibhotla, Alok Madasani and Ian Grillot)