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Candlelight vigil held in support of domestic violence victims

Published: Oct. 20, 2021 at 9:53 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON, N.C. (WITN) - A candlelight vigil was held Wednesday evening on Washington’s waterfront in support of domestic violence victims and survivors.

The annual Light the Way Candle Vigil took place at Mac Hodges Festival Park, where people took time out of their evenings to remember those who lost their lives.

One by one, names of victims were read aloud, names of those who lost their lives in our state since January from domestic violence.

Valerie Kines is an organizer for the event and executive director at Ruth’s House, a safe place for those leaving situations of domestic violence.

“There’s something special about remembering them. Their family who have lost them to let them know they are not forgotten, they are still in our hearts. We didn’t know them but they are still in our hearts and we did have a victim, a murder/suicide situation here in our county this year so they aren’t forgotten.”

Valerie Kines, executive director Ruth's House

The Light the Way event had remarks from Washington Mayor Donald Sadler.

Organizers say domestic violence affects everyone, and the vigil is done every year to remember and also give support to those who are still in these situations.

“It’s important for survivors and those that are still in domestic violence situations to not feel alone.”

Valerie Kines, executive director Ruth's House

Attendees also spoke up about the severity of domestic violence.

“Domestic violence is unacceptable. There are so many levels of it. There could be emotional abuse, military abuse, or physical abuse, sometimes it just goes on and on and on and just get trapped. Not just the women, the men as well.”

The vigil is an annual event, but was cancelled last year due to the pandemic.

For more information and resources, you can head to https://www.thehotline.org/.

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