ONTARIO, Calif. (KABC) --It was a step toward healing for those who knew the victims of last month's San Bernardino terror shooting as more than 600 employees returned to work on Monday at the Inland Regional Center.
For most of them, it was their first time back since Dec. 2, when couple Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik went into a conference room and opened fire, killing 14 people and injuring 22 others.
MORE: Inland Regional Center reopens after San Bernardino terror attack
All the employees were allowed to leave early to attend a private memorial service for the victims in Ontario around 2 p.m.
Amid tight security, hundreds of San Bernardino county employees packed the Citizens Business Bank Arena to honor the victims.
The memorial service was a chance for workers to come together and support one another as music performed by the county's employee choir helped set the mood.
Saddleback Church Pastor Rick Warren discussed the grief process, imploring those impacted by the attacks to release their feelings and support each other.
"If you want to get through this as a county, you need not to repress it, not suppress it. You next express it and confess it..." he said.
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who led the city following the 9/11 terror attack, delivered a speech.
"Don't ever think you're alone, you're not," he said. "There is a whole country that loves you... maybe they can't feel it exactly as you can, but they get it."
He then called on the American public to stand with San Bernardino.
"Let this become like a turning point for San Bernardino," he said. "Where, yeah, the terrorist tried to destroy you and, wow, you showed them you're stronger than the terrorist, and you've got the whole country behind you."