Auroroa theater reopens

11:11 AM, Jan 18, 2013   |    comments
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AURORA, Colorado, (NBC NEWS) -- The Colorado theater that was the site of July's "Dark Knight Rises" mass shooting has reopened.

A remembrance ceremony was held at the theater that's been renamed the Century Aurora.

"We are a community of survivors and we are a community that is united in our recovery... the reopening of this theater is part of that recovery process," Aurora mayor Steve Hogan told the crowd.

About 2,000 invited guests attended the remembrance ceremony, victims, their families, first responders and hospital workers all impacted by the horror of July 20th.

"For many here tonight this is the path to healing and part of that process," said Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper.

Afterwards a movie was shown at the former crime scene.

Family members of victims had the opportunity to tour the theater earlier this week.

Some are stayed away, calling the reopening events "disgusting", while others say it's one more step toward healing.

Theater 9, once the scene of horrific carnage, is now a digital theater with a wall to wall and ceiling to floor screen.

Despite the redesign, some say this will always be a haunting reminder of the crimes committed inside.

"None of us are interested in ever setting foot in that theater, that killing field, ever again," says Sandy Phillips, mother of one of the victims.

"We would prefer for it to be torn down," adds Eriz Scott, another victim's mother.

Tom Sullivan, whose son Alex was killed in the massacre, supported the reopening.

"We decided we're going to celebrate Alex's life. That's what we're going to do. We will be at places Alex would have been," he says.

Shooting survivor Harell Brooks agrees.

"I don't want it to be something holding me back from moving on," he says..

Suspect James Holmes, bound over for trial after a hearing last week, is scheduled to enter a plea in March.

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