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Navy Yard workers return with mixed emotions

4:17 PM, Sep 19, 2013   |    comments
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Photo Gallery: Navy Yard shooting victims
Savannah Walker, right, hugs Alex James during a candlelight vigil in honor of Richard Michael Ridgell at Jaycee Park in Westminster, Md. Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2013. Ridgell was killed in Monday's shooting at the Navy Yard in Washington. (AP Photo/Carroll County Times, Dave Munch)

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- The Washington Navy Yard re-opened for business Thursday morning.  Workers were allowed back on the base around 6 a.m., but the building 197, the scene of Monday's shooting rampage, remains closed.

The memories of Monday's tragedy are still fresh, the grieving has just begun but the work must continue.

"We'll see what the day brings and I'm not exactly sure what it's going to entail. Hopefully some normalcy but also recognition that we lost some people," said one worker.

While dodging allegations regarding the police response to Monday's tragic shooting, returning employees coming back since that shooting say Thursday is about remembering the loss and healing each other.

A worker on Thursday told us, "It's a tragic event and brings up a lot of good questions and some invalid questions. The hard questions have to be asked."

Another worker said, "I think the best thing is for us to just pick up the pieces and go on with our daily jives and be proud of what we're doing here."

Navy leaders agree. They're not commenting on the allegations but focusing only, they say, on healing the community. They know that for these employees it will take time.

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