Buddhist monks from across Thailand on Saturday led a prayer vigil for all the victims of the mass shooting that shook the country earlier this month, international media reported. Jakraphanth Thomma, a 32-year-old soldier, killed 29 people in a shooting spree in the city of Nakhon Ratchasima.
Public prayer ceremonies were held exactly a week after the tragic incident took place. Terminal 21 shopping centre where the tragic incident took place was reopened for the public on Thursday.
On February 10, the relatives of the victims conducted Buddhist prayer ceremonies. According to reports, the grieving family members held pictures of the victims and arrived at a morgue located in Nakhon Ratchasima to carry coffins back home. A victim's grieving father said that he was clueless of what to do next as he waited to claim his son's body. He further added that his grandchild kept on asking why he couldn't call his father and that made him clueless on how to tackle the situation.
According to reports, a prayer ceremony was headed by a Buddhist monk outside the mall for one of the victims, Peeraphat Palasan. Palasan was killed as Jakrapanth Thomma opened fire into the moving traffic, killing the man and causing his car to crash. Palasan's father, Witoon said that his son had just finished work and had gone to the mall for shopping, adding that he never thought that he would be losing his son forever.
Sergeant-Major Jakrapanth Thomma with an unknown grudge had already killed several people on his way to the mall, which is the largest shopping centre and was crowded on the first day of the long weekend. He swaggered through the mall with a machine gun slung over his shoulder, helmet on, and was in full combat gear as seen in the CCTV cameras.