'Hugs, Not Hate' campaing helps Pulse victim's family heal

- Brian Alvear doesn't have to know you to approach you and ask if you want a hug. He says rarely does someone refuse - and he's hugged hundreds of people in the last few weeks.

"My message is about uniting everyone," he told FOX 13. " Not just Orlando. Not just Florida. Like everyone, everywhere."

Alvear started his "Hugs, Not Hate" campaign after his sister, Amanda, was killed in the Pulse shooting in Orlando.

He says the campaign - and its positive response - is helping him heal, and it's a way to remember and honor his sister.

"That's all she was about. Hearts everywhere, rainbows and hugs," commented Alvear.

After seeing him on Facebook, people all over the world are joining in. He has gotten messages of support from Hawaii, Columbia, Argentina and Germany.

Wednesday night, Alvear will be holding what he calls, "Hug-a-palooza." It will take place at Club Mainstreet in Lakeland, where he is a DJ and runs Karaoke.

"Are you getting tired?" FOX 13 asked. "No," he responded quickly. "Every hug you get just makes you feel better. It gives you more strength."

Up Next:


Up Next

  • 'Hugs, Not Hate' campaing helps Pulse victim's family heal
  • 'We are heavily armed,' Tampa church warns
  • FHP joins hunt for Seminole Heights killer
  • USF freshman wide receiver accused of rape on campus
  • Police horse in St. Pete paints masterpieces during downtime
  • Silver alert issued for missing Largo man
  • Longtime country singer, songwriter Mel Tillis dies
  • Small plane crashes near airpark in Clearwater
  • Seminole Heights shooting victim Ronnie Felton honored through charity
  • Crews battle 2-alarm fire at St. Pete apartment complex