ORLANDO, Fla. – Five years ago, 49 families learned their mothers, fathers, siblings and friends would not be coming home after a gunman opened fire on the Pulse nightclub in Orlando.
Each one of the 49 people killed, now known as the 49 angels, on June 12, 2016, left behind a legacy.
To honor their memories, News 6 journalists compiled stories learning about every victim through interviews, news articles and social media. All 49 articles can be found at ClickOrlando.com/Pulse49.
[WATCH: News 6 special on Pulse]
Before they were victims, the 49 were mothers, fathers, recent graduates, veterans, breast cancer survivors, dreamers, artists and so much more.
Those stories include 33-year-old Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala’s who was known as “Rody” by friends. Ayala served as the platelet supervisor at OneBlood, the center that collected blood donations for many Pulse shooting survivors.
“He was the sweetest, most genuine person. (He) cared for everyone and would do anything for you, and he’ll be sorely missed here,” Kelly Gollert, the director of manufacturing for OneBlood, said after his death.
Brenda Lee Marquez McCool, 49, was a mother to 11 children, beat cancer twice and often went dancing at the Pulse nightclub with her son. She was at the nightclub with her son, Isaiah Henderson, on June 12, 2016.