A memorial is planned on Monday (August 15) for the five people who were killed on Saturday night when a stage collapsed at a Sugarland concert at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis. According to the event’s official website, the fair will reopen on Monday with Governor Mitch Daniels in attendance at the memorial service.
The memorial is set to take place at the Free Stage; the website also laid out plans for the remainder of events during the Indiana State Fair. The Chicago Tribune reports strong wind gusts may have contributed to the stage’s collapse at the show, which was attended by upwards of 12,000 people. USA Today reports that a severe thunderstorm warning had been issued in the hours leading up to the concert.
In addition to the five who died, four dozen people were injured in the incident, which took place before the headliners took the stage.
Sugarland are currently on tour with Sara Bareilles. “The accident at the Indiana State Fair felt like a bad dream,” Bareilles wrote on her site. “The weather changed in a matter of minutes and the stage collapsed in a matter of seconds.”
Sugarland’s frontwoman, Jennifer Nettles, released a lengthy statement on the band’s official site about the incident. “I am so moved. Moved by the grief of those families who lost loved ones. Moved by the pain of those who were injured and the fear of their families. Moved by the great heroism as I watched so many brave Indianapolis fans actually run toward the stage to try and help lift and rescue those injured. Moved by the quickness and organization of the emergency workers who set up the triage and tended to the injured,”
she wrote. “There are no words to process a moment of this magnitude and gravity. There are only prayers for peace in the hearts of the bereft, and prayers of thanksgiving for those who were spared or safe.
A piece of our heart is left in that grandstand. May God provide peace and healing to the people of Indianapolis.”
The statement continued, “We wish to pass along our most sincere thanks for the messages of love, prayer and support from our fan family. We’ll post any further updates here as they become available.”