Olathe restaurant reopens after tragic shooting - KCTV5

Olathe restaurant reopens after tragic shooting

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Austins was hoping for a fresh start when it opened for first time since Wednesday's shooting. (Natalie Davis/KCTV) Austins was hoping for a fresh start when it opened for first time since Wednesday's shooting. (Natalie Davis/KCTV)
People brought flowers and placed them outside the restaurant as a memorial. (Natalie Davis/KCTV) People brought flowers and placed them outside the restaurant as a memorial. (Natalie Davis/KCTV)
OLATHE, KS (KCTV) -

As Austins Bar and Grill reopened on Saturday, there was hope it would be a fresh start for the restaurant that was marred by tragedy earlier this week.

The owner said he wanted to reopen this weekend to help the community return to some sense of normalcy. 

Inside, patrons were enjoying business as usual and their dinner. However, it was a more intimate restaurant experience with hugs and some tears.

People from the Olathe community packed Austins to show their support for the restaurant and the community in light of Wednesday’s shooting that left one man dead and two others injured.

People placed flowers and mementos outside, creating a growing memorial. 

Police officers and local officials came to shower their support, as well as Olathe Mayor Michael Copeland, who brought his family.

"Our community has suffered an unspeakable tragedy," he said. "People have had had a huge heart for the victims. Our community has had a huge heart for the victims and their families. That community support is important; it says who we are in Olathe."

“I think it's within the human spirit to come together and support each other during times of difficulty,” said Aamer Almujahed, a Garmin employee.

Aamer Almujahed is an engineer at Garmin and an immigrant, much like two of the victims in the shooting.

Almujahed said he didn’t know them personally, but came to Austins to show his support.

He said the fact that the shooting could have been racially motivated has worried his family back in Yemen.

“My parents, my family were kind of worried for me because they're like, ‘That could've been you,’” he explained.

Aamer has a more optimistic viewpoint. He’s been in the U.S. since 2005, went to school here and pursued his career here. He said he will not live in fear.

“I have nothing but love and appreciation for this country,” he said. “I know that what happened on Wednesday is not normal. Yes, you do hear these negative instances every so often, but overall it's a wonderful place to be and it has allowed me to accomplish many of my dreams.”

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