Four days after a mass shooting left 29 people dead and more than 50 injured, the public turned out this morning to reopen the venue where the carnage unfolded in hope of raising spirits.
Terminal 21 Korat reopened its doors Thursday to thousands of people who walked in to pray and make offerings to more than 200 monks – a Buddhist ceremony which practitioners believe will bring in the good and usher out the bad.
#KoratStrong and #KoratMoveOn have become trending hashtags since yesterday as the shopping mall where the disgruntled soldier engaged in a bloody overnight standoff attempted a return to normal.
Superstitions and belief in the spirit world make places where violent or unpleasant deaths occur undesirable to many Thais. Owner L&H Property Co. announced yesterday it would waive rental fees for February.
Tuk-tuks, taxis and motorbikes today are offering free rides in front of the venue until 3pm.
Donations to compensate the families of the victims have reached over THB53 million (US$1.7 million) as of Thursday. On Sunday, a concert dubbed Korat Move On will take place in front of the Thao Suranari Monument, the city’s most prominent landmark.
“Korat is our home. Let’s help and cheer each other up. If Thais don’t love each other, who will?” Facebook user May Ey wrote.
“As someone who calls Korat home, we’ll overcome the grief and sadness. Korat is the city of strength and life will move on,” user Cargo Pants Aoy wrote.
“After the storm comes a calm #KoratMoveOn,” @JennyAntony5 tweeted.
The complex is one of three Terminal 21 venues nationwide. They are also located in Bangkok and Pattaya. The mass shooting left 30 dead, including the shooter.