Barbara Poma, owner of the Orlando gay nightclub Pulse, on Friday addressed a Pride rally in lower Manhattan.

“I'm here today because I want you to know that Orlando and the world's gay community are strong and united,” Poma told the crowd gathered at Pier 26. “We will not allow evil to prevail.”

As Poma spoke, video screens flashed pictures of the 49 people who died at the nightclub when a lone gunman opened fire. Dozens more were wounded.

“Today, we must also use this as an opportunity to comfort one another,” she added. “To offer our love to the beautiful souls we lost.”

More than 1.6 million people are expected to attend Sunday's New York City Pride parade, which Poma will help lead.