A group focused on providing comfort to families of children killed in homicides will hold its fourth annual ceremony in September to honor the victims and keep their memories alive.
The National Day of Remembrance ceremony will be held at 6 p.m. Sept. 22 at May Park Community Center in Augusta.
The designated day was approved by Congress in 2007 in recognition of Lisa Hullinger, of Cincinnati, who was killed Sept. 25, 1978, while studying in Germany. Along with their push for the national day, Hullinger’s parents, Robert and Charlotte, founded Parents of Murdered Children, a national support group for families of victims.
Von Daniels, the organizer of the Augusta chapter support group, which meets at the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office each month, said the chapter’s involvement acts as an extension of the group’s mission to support those dealing with that grief.
“In 2013, I started the group and found out about it after the fact, so I decided to do one the following year and every year so far,” she said. “I want them to know that someone cares and that they’re not alone in their grief.”
The event will begin with prayer by the Rev. Melvin Ivey of Greater St. John Baptist Church and a welcome from Daniels.
Bobby Hankerson, a chaplain with the sheriff’s office, will be the keynote speaker for this year’s event, Daniels said.
Attendees will be invited to hold candles as a slideshow with photos of all victims is displayed.
Daniels said the slideshow is a new element for the ceremony to commemorate victims of families who aren’t involved and might not be aware of the group.
“I want them to know that their loved one has not been forgotten and that we are here to support them,” she said.
Photos for the slideshow can be sent to email@example.com by today.