Sikh community to remember six lives lost in shooting at temple in Oak Creek three years ago

OAK CREEK -- August 5th, 2015 marks the three-year anniversary of the shooting inside the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek. On that tragic day, six people lost their lives, and four others were injured when Wade Page opened fire on a sunny Sunday morning. This weekend, memorial events are planned to honor the victims who lost their lives in this shooting.

"When you are in pain and you share pain, it gets lesser," Balhair Dulai, vice president of the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin said.

Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek

On August 5th, 2012, 40-year-old Wade Page opened fire at the temple. Six people died and four others were hurt.

A responding officer shot Page in the stomach, and then Page took his own life.

It is a day members of the Sikh community will never forget.

Memorial for victims in shooting at Sikh Temple of Wisconsin

"The shooter was welcomed here. He wasn`t looked at as somebody who was an outsider. He wasn`t looked at as someone who was going to come here and harm anybody," Dulai said.

"What happened on that August 5th was a clear example of hate violence," Rahul Dubey said.

Members of the Sikh community and the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin say they're using the tragedy to teach others about understanding and compassion for others.

"We have a lot of shootings going on around the city, around the world, around the nation. How we can make a bigger impact -- so that we can spread message of love and compassion?" Dubey said.

To spread that message, the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin is hosting four days of memorial events -- including a 48-hour prayer service to remember the victims.

Sikh Temple of Wisconsin shooting victims

"We want to try and make a change outside in the community how we can do that by remembering those by remembering our beloved ones because what we lost we don't want other people to lose," Harjinder Singh, Sikh Temple of Wisconsin priest said.

This weekend's events aren't just for members of the Sikh community. Everyone is welcome.

Sikh Temple of Wisconsin

"When people walk in that door -- doesn`t matter who they are or what religion they are. They are coming into the temple for one reason -- to stand with everyone else because they feel the pain," Dulai said.


The Sikh Temple memorial events going on this weekend include:

Saturday, August 01

    Chardhi Kala” is the spirit of relentless optimism: a philosophy that empowers us to persevere and grow from hardship.

    This is also the first year we will be hosting the Chardhi Kala Blood Drive at the event. The blood drive is being operated by the Blood Center of WI and will be from 8 a.m. - 1 p.m.

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