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Property records reveal more details about sale of planned Pulse memorial land

ORLANDO, Fla. — The organization once in charge of building a memorial for the mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub has now sold some of the property it bought for that project.

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The sale took place just one day before the City of Orlando announced it’s now leading the memorial project.

When the onePULSE Foundation bought the property adjacent to the nightclub site in May of 2022, the foundation said it needed the land to build the National Pulse memorial.

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Property records filed this week show the foundation sold the property to RMS Investments LLC. It’s tied to Craig Mateer, whom Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed to the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority in March of 2021 and the Florida Board of Governors in 2022.

The price tag on the sale was $1 million, according to the onePulse Foundation.

In a statement to Eyewitness News, the Vice Chairman of the foundation’s board, George Kalagridis, said the foundation was liquidating all its assets in the dissolving process. Kalagridis added the foundation “accepted the best offer as to price and closing timeframe.”

OnePulse sold the property for the same amount it purchased it for in May of 2022. Then, funding for the purchase came from private sources, including two grants from the Truist Charitable Fund and Truist Foundation, totaling $250,000.

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In design renderings released in late 2019, onePulse planned to put the memorial at the site of Pulse itself, with a gathering space and garden overlooking the space. A survivor’s walk would connect the site to Orlando Health.

“I would like to ensure that it is completed before the 10th anniversary of the Pulse tragedy,’ Orlando mayor Buddy Dyer said while providing an update Tuesday on the plans for the memorial.

Dyer says he wants to see the memorial complete by June of 2026, less than two years away.

When asked if onePULSE’s sale of the property threw a wrench into their memorial plans, Orlando City officials said it was aware of onePulse selling the property, but any plans for the building and its design have yet to be determined.

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OnePULSE Foundation officials say they’ve worked “in the best interest of the memorial process moving forward.”

An Orlando City spokesperson confirmed Tuesday that City Attorney Mayanne Downs had conversations with Craig Mateer about the purchase of the property. The city says the two discussed Mateer helping the city so “the property could be used to support the Pulse memorial.”

OnePULSE Foundation officials have not responded to inquiries about what they plan to do with the funds received form the sale of the property.

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