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Colorado theater to reopen after shooting

Jan. 14, 2013 at 3:20 PM

AURORA, Colo., Jan. 14 (UPI) -- The Colorado movie theater where 12 people were killed in July will reopen to the public after a memorial service, the theater's owners said.

Cinemark, the company that operates the Century Aurora 16 theater in Aurora has spent about $1 million renovating the movie house after a gunman entered a midnight showing of "The Dark Knight Rises" and opened fire, killing 12 and injuring 58.

Survivors will be allowed to tour the facility in private for two days prior to the public opening and Cinemark said grief counselors will be on site to talk with survivors and family members of those killed.

After a memorial that will be attended by Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and Cinemark Chief Executive Officer Tim Warner, the theater will operate for two days, free of charge for survivors and first responders who came to the scene of the July 20 massacre.

One survivor told The Denver Post she and her daughter, who were in Theater Nine where the shooting took place, want to return to face their fears.

"This is closure," said Amanda Gonzalez. "We were so blessed to get out together that night. My kids want to see it [the theater], so we'll all go back in together."

Gonzalez said she and her children tried to go to a different theater to see a movie but had to leave during the previews because sitting in a dark theater was too stressful.

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