Hope Rises Relief Fund

On July 20th, the world awoke to an unspeakable tragedy, learning of the catastrophic events at the midnight premiere of “The Dark Knight Rises” in theatre No. 9 at the Century 16 in Aurora, a suburb of Denver.

As the news quickly spread it was soon realized this tragedy was not isolated in Aurora; it touched thousands across the United States and beyond who lost loved ones or knew of those in the theatre that night.

Cory Schneider’s very close friend (the two are so close Schneider refers to him as his cousin) was nearly part of the tragedy.

Gianmarco Cacciamatta, a Schneider family friend whose father was a foreign exchange student that lived with Cory’s mom’s family in high school and “basically became part of the family,” had tickets to the midnight show. When an early morning meeting was scheduled for Cacciamatta for Friday, he passed his tickets off to a co-worker.

That co-worker, 22-year-old Petra Anderson, sustained severe injuries in the incident, while the six-year-old seated beside her died.

According to an online story featured in the Sacramento Bee, Petra is “is expected to fully recover, according to her mother, Kim.”

Cacciamatta has been working with others on the Hope Rises Relief Fund, which is raising financial aid for the victims of the Aurora shootings, including Anderson. The fund also wants to send the message that no matter how horrible a situation looks, you always have the power to turn it into something immensely positive.

Schneider is backing his cousin and the cause, and is urging you to help with your donations, thoughts, or prayers.

For more information on how to lend your support, visit; #readytobelieve4petra is the Twitter hashtag for the cause.