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'I want them to know the whole country loves them': 1 October crosses builder honored

Clark County workers prepare to move memorial crosses during “Greg Zanis Day” at the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign on the Las Vegas Strip on Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017. Zanis, a carpenter from Aurora, Ill., was recognized by the Clark County Commision for creating 58 crosses memorializing those who died during the Route 91 Harvest festival shooting on Oct. 1. The crosses were later moved to the Clark County Museum for its permanent collection. [Bill Hughes/Las Vegas News Bureau]

Fifty-eight wooded crosses, a symbol of the 1 October shooting, have left their home on the Las Vegas Strip. They are headed for a permanent spot at the Clark County Museum in Henderson.

Greg Zanis, the carpenter from Aurora, Ill., who created the memorial, was honored by Clark County commissioners for his donation and effort.

“I want the families to know Greg Zanis loves them, and when other people see this they say I love them, too. I want them to know the whole country loves them and we are behind them,” Zanis said at the Welcome to Las Vegas sign, where the memorial has been for the past month.

GALLERY | 58 crosses memorializing 1 October victims head to Clark County Museum

The crosses, which Zanis says takes an hour each to build, have become a physical manifestation of #VegasStrong.

Among the people who attended the ceremony was a man who knows just how close he came to being cross No. 59.

“It’s tough,” said Mark Strickland, who was shot twice during the melee. “You’re empathetic, but you’re grateful your name isn’t on there.”

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