HOUSTON — On Monday, mourners outside NRG Park reflected on Friday's tragedy.
"That night was not supposed to go that way," read Astroworld Festival attendee Ben Castro from a letter he wrote in honor of the victims. "I’m so sorry it ended up like this.”
He left his note among flowers and other items in one of a number of growing memorials near the venue site.
"The community is heartbroken," Castro read. "I can’t imagine how it’s like to lose a loved one like that.”
Castro said he was within 30 feet of Travis Scott at one point during the show amid an increasingly chaotic crowd.
But he was unaware of just how bad things got until Saturday morning.
"This was something that I cared about and loved so much," Castro said. "Then to just realize that it hurt so many people and killed so many kids, it’s an awful thing.”
“I didn’t expect any of this to happen," Lewis Perez, of Chicago, said. "You don’t expect this to happen at a concert.”
Perez recalled getting swallowed up by the crowd but wanted to pay respects to those who did not walk away before heading back home.
"For the love, for the ragers," Perez said. "I don’t know how to explain it.”
One of victim Madison Dubiski’s high school classmates felt drawn to the site as well.
"To pay respects and some condolence to her and her family," Steven Ramos said. "Saying prayers for her and thoughts.”
Festivalgoer Rolando Villareal didn’t know Heights High School student Brianna Rodriguez but he left a necklace on a teddy bear in her memory.
"It’s not fair, man," Villareal said. "It’s not what it’s about. This is fun, it’s supposed to be a good thing for the city and this is just heartbreaking.”
Villareal said he's attended every Astroworld Festival.
He described this year as especially “out of control.”
It's an event to be remembered for all the wrong reasons.
“All of you are in my prayers," Castro read from his note. "If you need help, please reach out because you are not alone.”