BUFFALO, Minn. (FOX 9) - It's been more than seven months since a gunman walked into the Allina Health Clinic in Buffalo and opened fire. Now, workers there are ready to get back to work after the tragedy.
"The staff involved didn’t feel like it was appropriate to have a reopening ceremony or celebration because it is still kind of a somber thing," said Dani Palmer, creator of the "Buffalo Strong" website and community group, which was created after the Feb. 9 shooting.
The group is helping Allina as it reopens the clinic, arranging comfort food for staff and even massage therapists.
"We know that it’s going to be an emotional time for everybody, and we want to support them in the courageous steps that they’re taking," Palmer said.
Staff and visitors will also find a new statue titled "Phoenix" in front of the clinic, installed through donated funds.
Meanwhile, the inside of the clinic has also been remodeled to improve security.
"We wanted to make it look different, feel different for the staff there, but also to add a lot of safety features to make it comfortable for patients and the community to come back as well. So, I think everybody’s ready," said Sue Olmscheid with the Buffalo Chamber of Commerce.
The Chamber says any well wishes for staff – such as cards or gifts – are encouraged but should be brought to the Chamber, as the public is asked to stay away from the clinic during reopening.
"It’s out of respect for them, to just have this time to adjust to their new surroundings and getting back on their feet again," Olmscheid explained.
"They want everyone to know that they’re excited to have their patients coming back and to return to a state of normal," Palmer added.