Country music superstar Tim McGraw will showcase a concert to benefit the organization Sandy Hook Promise, an anti-gun violence group organized after the 2012 elementary school shooting.
The July 17 concert also will feature Billy Currington, Chase Bryant and some special unannounced guests, according to the New York Post. “Tim McGraw: A Concert for Sandy Hook Promise” will be held at the XFINITY Theatre in Hartford, Connecticut.
WVIT-TV reported that McGraw touring band fiddle player Dean Brown is a friend to Mark Barden, a musician and father of a Daniel Barden, one of the 20 first-graders who died in the 2012 shooting incident.
“Out of this tragedy a group was formed that made a promise to honor the lives lost and turn it into a moment of transformation,” McGraw in a statement. “Sandy Hook Promise teaches that we can do something to protect our children from gun violence. I want to be a part of that promise – as a father and as a friend.”
Barden told WVIT-TV that he and his family were “humbled” by the news that the three-time Grammy winner, Brown and the band would headline the benefit concert.
“Dean and his wife Cindy helped my wife and I through our darkest hour and helped buoy our spirits,” Barden told the television station. “It meant more than words could ever say.”
Sandy Hook Promise was formed in Newtown by some family members of those who lost children and loved ones during the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, according to the Newtown Bee.
This past December, Barden’s family was one of three featured in the documentary “What They Left Behind,” a 34-minute film released by Sandy Hook Promise, reported Newsweek magazine. Nicole Hockley, whose six-year-old son Dylan was killed in the shooting, told the magazine that the documentary gave “a glimpse now into what it means to be in this club that no one wants to join.”
The benefit comes while McGraw will be on the road for his Shotgun Rider Tour, which begins June 5 in Little Rock and covers 36 dates.