Knoxville man helps raise over $194K after California attack

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A Knoxville man has helped raise over $194,000 for the families of the victims in the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California.

Media outlets report Tarek El-Messidi, founder of the nonprofit organization Celebrate Mercy, has helped organize an initiative called Muslims United for San Bernardino. The Dec. 2 shooting left 14 dead and 21 wounded.

El-Messidi says the initiative raised the money for the victims’ families, with most of the donations having come from Muslims.

El-Messidi collaborated on the project with Dr. Faisal Qazi, a physician in Southern California and president of the MiNDS network, a health care organization.

El-Messidi founded Celebrate Mercy in 2010. The organization offers instruction through seminars, videos and webcasts about the life and teachings of the Prophet Muhammad, the chief prophet and founder of Islam.