Inspiration Orlando United
A memorial tribute mural honoring the Pulse nightclub shooting victims
On the night of June 12, 2016, a festive atmosphere in the Pulse Nightclub was suddenly shattered by violent gunfire. 49 beautiful lives were taken and 53+ injured… never to be forgotten by Orlando and the world.
Immediately following the tragedy, Michael Pilato, Yuriy Karabash and Chimene Hurst formed and led a collaborative team to create a unique mural, Inspiration Orlando United.
What evolved is a visual narrative illuminating courageous acts of compassion that in-turn revealed a heart of love and kindness in the City Beautiful.
Thank You to all of our sponsors. This would not be possible without their support.
This mural’s mission is to engage and utilize public art to transform this tragic event into a visual shared history with stories of treasured lives, inspirational responses and selfless acts of leadership, love and hope.
The Inspiration Orlando United mural is currently 44 feet wide by 14 feet high. It’s core composition features the portraits of the 49 victims who lost their lives, the two survivors who passed before the first-year mark, and a representative selection of survivors, inspirational responders and passionate caregivers.
The mural is a work in progress. The painting continues as newly-learned stories of inspiration are learned and added.
The Inspiration Orlando United mural’s newest additions to the overall composition will be unveiled at the Orlando Museum of Art on June 12, 2023 to honor and remember the 49 loved-ones lost and the lives forever changed as the world rose united to say “Love Always Wins.”
It is an honor to be invited to join hands with the Orlando community and together support the mural as it continues to breathe hope, justice, healing and a passion for peace.
A Healing Tribute:
“Inspiration Orlando United” serves as a visual testament to the lives lost and the resilience of the Orlando community. The mural was unveiled in 2018, two years after the tragic shooting that claimed the lives of 49 individuals and deeply affected countless others. Its creation was a collaborative effort between the artists and the community, providing solace and healing through the transformative power of art.
Themes and Symbolism:
Michael Pilato and Yuriy Karabash intricately crafted the mural to convey a profound message of love, unity, and strength. The artwork encompasses various symbols and themes that honor the victims and the resilience of the LGBTQ+ community.
At the center of the mural, angelic figures with outstretched wings embrace the victims, symbolizing protection, compassion, and the transcendent power of love. Each victim is uniquely represented through vibrant and colorful portraits, capturing their individuality and celebrating their lives.
The artists incorporated meaningful elements throughout the mural, including a butterfly motif, symbolizing transformation, freedom, and hope. The butterflies serve as a metaphor for the resilience and spirit of the LGBTQ+ community, emerging from the darkness and evolving into symbols of beauty and strength.
Additionally, the mural features rainbow-colored ribbons, representing the LGBTQ+ pride movement and the vibrant diversity of the community. These ribbons intertwine, forming a united and unbreakable bond, emphasizing the message of solidarity and inclusivity.
Community Healing and Unity:
Inspiration Orlando United” stands not only as a memorial but also as a catalyst for healing and unity within the Orlando community. The mural provided a space for survivors, friends, family, and visitors to gather, reflect, and pay tribute to the lives lost.
Throughout the creation process, the artists engaged with the community, listening to their stories, and incorporating their input. The involvement of the community in the mural’s conception and execution allowed for a deep connection and ensured that the artwork truly reflected the collective spirit of Orlando.
The mural became a focal point for remembrance and reflection, inspiring conversations about love, acceptance, and the ongoing fight against hate. It serves as a reminder that love will always triumph over hate and that the strength of a community can overcome even the darkest of moments.
Inspiration Orlando United” by Michael Pilato and Yuriy Karabash stands as a powerful and emotional tribute to the victims of the Pulse Nightclub shooting. Through its stunning imagery, symbolism, and community involvement, the mural serves as a source of healing, remembrance, and unity.
This remarkable artwork not only honors the lives lost but also highlights the resilience and strength of the LGBTQ+ community. By capturing the individuality and celebrating the diversity of the victims, the mural fosters a profound sense of empathy and understanding.
As residents and visitors of Orlando stand before the mural, they are invited to reflect on the tragedy, but also to embrace hope, love, and the importance of unity. “Inspiration Orlando United” stands as a testament to the power of art to heal, unite, and inspire change, reminding us that even in the face of darkness, the human spirit can rise and shine brightly.
For those that rose, those who survived and those who love them.
In loving memory:
* Edward Sotomayor Jr., 34
* Stanley Almodovar III, 23
* Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo, 20
* Juan Ramon Guerrero, 22
* Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera, 36
* Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz, 22
* Luis S. Vielma, 22
* K.J. Morris, 37
* Eddie Jamoldroy Justice, 30
* Anthony Luis Laureano Disla, 25
* Jean Carlos Mendez Perez, 35
* Franky Jimmy Dejesus Velazquez, 50
* Amanda Lizette Alvear, 25
* Martin Benitez Torres, 33
* Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon, 37
* Mercedez Marisol Flores, 26
* Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado, 35
* Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez, 25
* Simon Adrian Carrillo Fernandez, 31
* Oscar A Aracena-Montero, 26
* Enrique L. Rios Jr., 25
* Miguel Angel Honorato, 30
* Javier Jorge-Reyes, 40
* Joel Rayon Paniagua, 32
* Jason Benjamin Josaphat, 19
* Cory James Connell, 21
* Juan P. Rivera Velazquez, 37
* Luis Daniel Conde, 39
* Shane Evan Tomlinson, 33
* Juan Chavez Martinez, 25
* Darryl Roman Burt II, 29
* Deonka Deidra Drayton, 32
* Alejandro Barrios Martinez, 21
* Jerald Arthur Wright, 31
* Leroy Valentin Fernandez, 25
* Tevin Eugene Crosby, 25
* Jonathan Antonio Camuy Vega, 24
* Jean C. Nives Rodriguez, 27
* Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala, 33
* Brenda Lee Marquez McCool, 49
* Yilmary Rodriguez Solivan, 24
* Christopher “Drew” Leinonen, 32
* Angel L. Candelario-Padro, 28
* Frank Hernandez Escalante, 27
* Paul Terrell Henry, 41
* Akyra Monet Murray, 18
* Christopher Joseph Sanfeliz, 24
* Antonio Davon Brown, 29
* Gerardo A Ortiz Jimenez, 25