Ariana Grande Pays Tribute to Manchester 4 Years After Tragic Bombing: 'My Heart Is with You'

At Ariana Grande's 2017 concert in Manchester, England, 22 were killed and more than 500 were injured

Ariana Grande
Ariana Grande.

Ariana Grande is reflecting on grief as she marks four years since the Manchester bombing.

On May 22, 2017, a bomber killed 22 people and injured more than 500 at Grande's concert in the U.K. city. Since then, Grande has often spoken out about suffering from anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder following the tragedy.

On Saturday, four years after the attack, the singer shared a post on her Instagram Story with a message for Manchester.

"Although grief is ever-present and our relationship to it is constantly evolving and expressing itself in different ways every day, year round…. I know that this anniversary will never be an easy one. Please know that I am thinking of you today," she wrote.

"Manchester, my heart is with you today and always," Grande added, above a graphic that listed the names of those who died: John Atkinson, Courtney Boyle, Philip Tron, Kelly Brewster, Georgina Callander, Olivia Campbell-Hardy, Liam Curry, Chloe Rutherford, Wendy Fawell, Martyn Hett, Alison Howe, Lisa Lees, Megan Hurley, Nell ones, Michelle Kiss, Angelika Klis, Marcin Klis, Morrell Leczkowski, Eilidh MacLeod, Elaine McIver, Saffie Rose Rouses and Jane Tweddle.

Ariana Grande, Manchester post
Ariana Grande/Instagram

In the wake of the bombing, Grande suspended her tour, but less than two weeks after the tragedy, she returned to Manchester for her star-studded benefit concert for the victims of the attack. Performers included Pharrell Williams, Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, Niall Horan, Robbie Williams, the Black Eyed Peas and Katy Perry, among others.

The concert raised $13 million for those affected.

Grande also channeled her pain into her music — writing the hit, "No Tears Left to Cry," the first single off her album, Sweetener. At the time she released the song, Grande said she was still finding her footing after the tragedy.

"May 22, 2017 will leave me speechless and filled with questions for the rest of my life," she said in a letter to fans shared in November 2018.

"Music is an escape. Music is the safest thing I've ever known. Music — pop music, stan culture — is something that brings people together, introduces them to some of their best friends, and makes them feel like they can be themselves. It is comfort. It is fun. It is expression. It is happiness. It is the last thing that would ever harm someone. It is safe," she wrote at the time. "When something so opposite and so poisonous takes place in your world that is supposed to be everything but that… it is shocking and heartbreaking in a way that seems impossible to fully recover from."

Kevin Mazur/One Love Manchester/Getty Images.

Grande went on to explain that the tragedy taught her resilience and not to take life for granted. "The spirit of the people of Manchester, the families affected by this horrendous tragedy, and my fans around the world have permanently impacted all of us for the rest of our lives," she said.

The pop star continued, "Their love, strength, and unity showed me, my team, my dancers, band, and entire crew not to be defeated. To continue during the scariest and saddest of times. To not let hate win. But instead, love as loudly as possible, and to appreciate every moment. The people of Manchester were able to change an event that portrayed the worst of humanity into one that portrayed the most beautiful of humanity. 'Like a handprint on my heart'… I think of Manchester constantly and will carry this with me every day for the rest of my life."

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

In 2019, Grande returned to Manchester for her first performance in the city since 2017, headlining the Manchester Pride Festival months after the second anniversary of the shooting.

Before taking the stage, she wrote on social media that all of her Manchester fans were "my heart in every way."

"Love you so much," she shared at the time. "Can't wait to give you all our love. You're my heart in every way. See you soon."

Related Articles