He lost his true love and found himself. Now Bernard's family is closer than ever.

"I'm a better father when I'm living an authentic life."

For 10 years, Ann Marie and Bernard Shondell were the loves of each others' lives.

Together, they welcomed three children to the world: Allie, Nick, and Joey. They were best friends and partners, devoted to their family.

Then one day, tragedy struck.

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After surviving the June 12, 2016, shooting at Orlando's Pulse nightclub, Tony Marrero found inspiration in a familiar place: music.

Recovering from a gunshot wound to the back, Tony found comfort in Katy Perry's music — specifically in her song "Rise."

Tony appeared on the Sept. 8 episode of "Ellen," recounting that night and discussing what life has been like in the post-Pulse world. At one point, he mentioned how helpful he found "Rise" in his recovery, telling Ellen DeGeneres that the song's powerful lyrics helped him stay focused, even joking that he played it so much that his boyfriend was surely sick of it.

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"Christopher was my only child. As I used to tell him, 'You can't do better than perfect.'"

That is how Christine Leinonen explained her relationship to her son to the teary-eyed crowd at the 2016 Democratic National Convention on July 27, 2016. Her son, Christopher, and his boyfriend, Juan Ramon Guerrero, were two of the 49 victims who were killed at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

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