America woke up to the devastating news that the worst mass shooting in U.S. history occurred early Sunday morning, when 50 people were killed, including the shooter, and 53 injured inside Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.
Both the Florida governor and city of Orlando have declared states of emergency, as authorities are considering the deadly incident a domestic terrorist attack.
"We are dealing with something we never imagined. Because of the scale I have called Governor Scott to request a state of emergency and we are issuing a state of emergency in the City," Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer stated over a series of seven tweets, with the last included the hashtag "#PrayforOrlando." "This allows us to bring additions resources to support our efforts. Our focus in the coming hours will be identifying the victims and notifying the families... The identification process may take some time. We ask for your patience as we want to be accurate. I continue to be proud of how our community has responded."
I continue to be proud of how our community has responded. 7/7 #PrayforOrlando— Mayor Buddy Dyer (@orlandomayor) June 12, 2016
On Sunday, Orlando Police Chief John Mena told reporters that the shooter -- who has been identified as 29-year-old Omar Mateen of Port St. Lucie, Florida -- had a handgun and assault rifle on him, as well as an additional weapon. "It appears he was organized and well-prepared," the chief said.
According to CBS News, Mateen called 911 at the time of his attack in order to pledge his allegiance to ISIS, and he also mentioned the Boston bombers.
The mass shooting came on the heels of Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles celebrating their own LGBT pride festivals, with the city of West Hollywood still going forward with plans for their annual parade on Sunday.
Many celebrities, public figures, and LGBTQ groups quickly took to social media following news of the mass shooting, and a Go Fund Me page has been set up by Equality Florida, the state's LGBT civil rights organization, to support victims of the shooting.
The Human Rights Campaign reacted to media reports on Sunday morning, noting that Pulse "serves the area's LGBTQ community." "We are devastated by this tragic act of violence," HRC President Chad Griffin said in a statement. "We are grieving for the victims and our hearts are broken for their friends, families, and for the entire community. This tragedy has occurred as our community celebrates pride, and now more than ever we must come together as a nation to affirm that love conquers hate."
GLAAD also quickly took to Twitter to "stand in solidarity with the LGBTQ community in #Orlando."
Backstreet Boys member and Orlando native Howie Dorough tweeted, "So sad to hear about the shootings this weekend in my hometown. My heart goes out w prayers to the victims, families, friends & community."
So sad to hear about the shootings this weekend in my hometown. My heart goes out w prayers to the victims, families, friends & community.— Howie D (@howied) June 12, 2016
Matt Bomer shared a similar sentiment, writing, "My heart goes out to all those affected by this terrible tragedy in Orlando. There are no words. Sending love and prayers."
My heart goes out to all those affected by this terrible tragedy in Orlando. There are no words. Sending love and prayers.— Matt Bomer (@MattBomer) June 12, 2016
Ellen DeGeneres simply tweeted, "Sobbing," while Bravo's Andy Cohen asked, "If we can't get rid of guns, can we please end homophobia?"
Sobbing.— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) June 12, 2016
If we can't get rid of guns can we please end homophobia? https://t.co/en0qLUPzPL— Andy Cohen (@Andy) June 12, 2016
See even more reactions below.
Woke up to hear the devastating news from FL. As we wait for more information, my thoughts are with those affected by this horrific act. -H— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) June 12, 2016
My thoughts and prayers are w my brothers and sisters who were at Orlando's Pulse Nightclub. RIP to those who lost their lives.— ADAM LAMBERT (@adamlambert) June 12, 2016
so. much. violence. it hurts my heart. sending as much Light and love as I possibly can to anyone and everyone I can possibly reach.— Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande) June 12, 2016
NO WORDS GOOD ENOUGH😫‼️WHEN UR HURT, WOUNDED, MURDERED WE ALL CRY‼️WE ALL MOURN ‼️WE R ALL LESS WITHOUT U MY EXTENDED FAMILY😥😭‼️#URNOTALONE— Cher (@cher) June 12, 2016
It's a traumatizing & emotional time for a many people. I dream of the world reflecting on what we can do to change this violence. #Orlando— Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) June 12, 2016
I pray for all the victims families 🙏🏽 during this shooting epidemic. That their pain be met with compassion and support from the world.— Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) June 12, 2016
I'm heartbroken by this tragedy. Praying for Orlando and the suffering created by this senseless violence.— Reese Witherspoon (@RWitherspoon) June 12, 2016
Absolutely heartbroken. All my thoughts and prayers are with you Orlando.— Chris Colfer (@chriscolfer) June 12, 2016
I'm too sad. Feeling helpless. I want a better world for my son. I want to take away the pain of the mothers of Orlando sons. so so sorry.— Idina Menzel (@idinamenzel) June 12, 2016
Orlando my thoughts and prayers are with you— Simon Cowell (@SimonCowell) June 12, 2016
So devastating 2 hear about the loss of life in the Orlando shooting & those hospitalized/the families going thru this prayers 4 strength😔🙏🏾— Missy Elliott (@MissyElliott) June 12, 2016
My heart goes out to those affected by the horrific shooting in Orlando... I am devastated. Let's just love and nothing else.— Ellie Goulding (@elliegoulding) June 12, 2016
OMG I'm so nauseous abt this Orlando massacre. This was today's Buddhist offering! pic.twitter.com/km3vKrAUX7— Fran Drescher (@frandrescher) June 12, 2016
Horrified by the mass shooting in Orlando. When will we do something to prevent these killing sprees?— John Legend (@johnlegend) June 12, 2016
They were people like you & me who just wanted to go out on a Saturday night and have a good time. Heartbreaking... https://t.co/xRGJDJ8OUO— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) June 12, 2016
50 dead. 53 injured. Saddened and horrified at heart, praying for each victim and the ones who… https://t.co/BHWLsaGoOn— Khloé (@khloekardashian) June 12, 2016
Heartbreaking news from Orlando Fl. Thinking of all of those who have been touched by this devastating tragedy. #Orlando— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) June 12, 2016
I am absolutely heartbroken for my hometown and the families/loved ones of the victims and all of those affected. 💔 https://t.co/qSn14pCE9e— Mandy Moore (@TheMandyMoore) June 12, 2016
Heartbroken. Scared. Angry. So much senseless death in Orlando & across this country. Sending love & prayers to all suffering. Horrific— Gabrielle Union (@itsgabrielleu) June 12, 2016
Madness. Hideous and cruel madness. To the survivors, and families of those slain, I'm so sorry. #StopGunViolence— olivia wilde (@oliviawilde) June 12, 2016
50 dead and 53 more injured?!— JJ Watt (@JJWatt) June 12, 2016
Thoughts are with all of the victims and their families.
This is madness. #Orlando
Tonight, every note I sing will be in remembrance of the lives taken in Orlando. 💔— Laura Benanti (@LauraBenanti) June 12, 2016
Heartbroken about the shooting in Orlando. My prayers and thoughts are with you all in America. I pray for this world to change!— Boy George (@BoyGeorge) June 12, 2016
I'm truly at a loss for words. To everyone in Orlando affected by this massacre, my thoughts, love, & prayers are with u ❤️💛💚💙💜— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) June 12, 2016
I'm done. I will never again vote for a politician who does not make the passage of reasonable gun laws a priority in this country. #orlando— Ben McKenzie (@ben_mckenzie) June 12, 2016
Oh my god! My heart is broken. Why do we keep doing this? https://t.co/hpotXT90pe— christina applegate (@1capplegate) June 12, 2016
I am heartbroken..My thoughts and prayers are with those affected by last night's tragedy in Orlando. 💔— Ariel Winter (@arielwinter1) June 12, 2016
Oh God. I just woke up to the news about #Orlando. My heart has just been kicked. I am so FUCKING tired of mass shootings. E-N-O-U-G-H!!!!— Josh Gad (@joshgad) June 12, 2016
The loss today is unimaginable. I'm scared for the world my son is growing up in. 134 mass shootings in US 2016, so far.— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) June 12, 2016
I am outrageously angered & saddened by the events in Orlando. I will (& encourage you to) help how you can. This is no "land of the free".— h (@halsey) June 12, 2016
NEW YORK: There will be a vigil for the victims of the terror attack in Orlando at 6 PM tonight outside the Stonewell Inn.— Dan Savage (@fakedansavage) June 12, 2016
Please don't tell me because I'm a "new" artist I should keep my opinions to myself. I'm not a new person. Gun control NOW.— Alisan Porter (@alisanporter) June 12, 2016
Sending thoughts to everyone affected in Orlando. What a devastating evening xxx— Rose McIver (@imrosemciver) June 12, 2016
Pray for Orlando GOD BLESS. MY PRAYERS ARE WITH YOU pic.twitter.com/eDJdQPZe1u— Sean Diddy Combs (@iamdiddy) June 12, 2016
Crying as I read about Orlando. I can't believe it. I don't understand. And especially at such a happy place!? Feeling sick.— KACEY MUSGRAVES (@KaceyMusgraves) June 12, 2016
If you're praying this morning, please also pray for an end to this country's sick addiction to guns and gun violence— Andy Richter (@AndyRichter) June 12, 2016
Stunned and horrified. My heart goes out to all Orlando victims, families and entire community. Unfathomable tragedy.— Ed Helms (@edhelms) June 12, 2016
We need gun control & we have to address a serious mental illness issue in our country.I've shot guns and not felt the need to shoot others— Iliza Shlesinger (@iliza) June 12, 2016
We aren't all in this together, because many of us don't support gun control, and those who don't are 100% responsible for all of this.— Joseph Fink (@PlanetofFinks) June 12, 2016
Here's a list of Florida Blood Banks. If you live in FL, especially Central Florida, please donate today: https://t.co/FVmHLfWp81— Anthony Carboni (@acarboni) June 12, 2016
Orlando is still reeling from the Friday night shooting of 22-year-old singer Christina Grimmie, who was killed during a meet-and-greet after her concert at Plaza Live. Find out what we know so far in the video below.