Addressing nearly 2,000 people at a City Hall vigil Monday evening for the victims of the Orlando nightclub shooting, Mayor Kenney urged against responding to hate with more hate.
"The LGBT civil rights movement has always been about love, so now in this time of tragedy, we cannot react with hate nor malice towards other marginalized groups," Kenney said, apparently reading from prepared remarks.
Then he went off script.
"I just learned this afternoon that Akyra Murray was," he started, his halting voice cracking with emotion, "one of the people that we lost."
Kenney said through tears that he frequently watched Murray play basketball when her high school, West Catholic Prep, competed against Neumann-Goretti, the mayor's team.
"She was a beautiful athlete," Kenney said through tears, calling the news of her death "devastating."
The massive crowd had assembled to mourn the 49 people slain, including Murray, who graduated just last week and was in Orlando on vacation, and 53 others injured.
They also sought reassurance that the LGBT community need not live in fear.
"I want you to know this is a safe space," Nellie Fitzpatrick, director of the Mayor's Office of LGBT Affairs, told the audience.
There were prayers, calls for stricter gun laws, and then a reading of the names of the identified victims, with Murray's name saved for last.
"Something needs to be done about the hate in this country," said Stevie Martin-Chester, 66, of Norristown, who attended the vigil with his husband, Arthur Martin-Chester, 71.
India H., 24, of Montgomery County, made a sign of the victims' names she had put together from a morning news report.
When she arrived at City Hall, she learned that Murray had been identified later in the day as a victim.
She quickly added the 18-year-old girl to her list of dead.
"When something this horrendous happens," India said, "you realize there is still so far to go."