In a flourish of purple, community members donning varying articles of clothing in different shades of purple met to honor and remember North Carolina victims of domestic violence on the Cumberland County Courthouse steps, Friday.
“Why purple? In the United States the Purple Heart is presented to those who have been wounded while serving. For survivors of domestic violence, who may also be wounded both physically and emotionally, the color is meant to be a symbol of peace, courage, survival, honor and dedication to ending violence,” explained keynote speaker and author Pamela Jacobs.
Traditionally, October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, but organizers decided to hold this event in September to spread the word about upcoming October events.
The Remember My Name Vigil, has been held for at least the last 14 years, explained Tom Hill, Fort Bragg Family Advocacy Program Manager.
The event originated with Retired Chief District Court Judge A. Elizabeth Keever, who during this year’s event, read the names of the North Carolina victims killed since Sept. 16, 2016.
Six of the names read by Keever were from Cumberland County. With the reading of each of these names, a Fayetteville police officer rang a bell in remembrance.
The event is continued by Chief District Court Judge Robert J. Stiehl III, who was himself a victim of domestic abuse as a child.
“I truly realize that I am not here to avenge, or payback or bring even the mistakes of some individual. But it is my responsibility to make a difference. It is beyond judging and it is the right thing to do, said Steihl.
Domestic/Partner Violence Awareness Month
Oct. 4, 9 to 10:30 a.m., Domestic Violence Awareness Symposium.
Oct. 11, Private Violence, free public training.
Oct. 16, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Conflict Management Skills for Women.
Oct. 24, 25 and 31, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Resilience Academy.
Join in every Friday during October for a month of unity.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic/partner violence, help is available 24 hours a day. Call the Fort Bragg Victim Hotline at 322-3418. If concerned about your privacy, simply do not give your name. You will still be helped. Or contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).