Group Of Black Pastors Hold Candlelight Vigil For Walmart Shooting Victims

Group Of Black Pastors Hold Candlelight Vigil For Walmart Shooting Victims

A group of Black pastors held a candlelight vigil to honor the victims who were shot and killed inside the Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia, on Nov. 22, according to the Associated Press.

The Chesapeake Coalition of Black Pastors held the candlelight vigil at the Mount Chesapeake church on Nov. 27.

A tall purple candle was lit for each victim during the 90-minute vigil that included music, tears, and prayer. Forty-three-year-old Lorenzo Gamble, 16-year-old Fernando “Jesus” Chavez-Barron, Tyneka Johnson, 22, 52-year-old Kellie Pyle, Brian Pendleton, 38, and 70-year-old Randy Blevins died after being shot by their co-worker, Andre Bing. The other six victims of the shooting who survived were also honored.

Gamble’s mother, Linda Gamble, was in attendance with her husband, Alonzo Gamble. Mrs. Gamble spoke at the vigil and said she couldn’t eat because she missed her son so much.

“It’s been really hard because I never, ever in a million years thought it would be my baby,” she said. “He’s gone, but he will always be in my heart.”

Bishop Kim Brown of Mount Lebanon Baptist Church noted the importance of supporting and listening to the victims’ families.
“The reality is it was important to send a message that we are one. We got to stand unified,” she said. “The worst thing you can say to any of those families is ‘I know what you are going through.’ The only thing you can do is listen. Cry with them; try to be there.”

Sen. Mamie Locke (D) was in attendance and said the community came together to support the victims’ familiess as they grieve.

“We cannot know your pain of waiting to hear about your loved ones or even understand the horror of the phone call when it came,” said Locke. “But what we can do is come together as a community and provide a shoulder to lean on.”

The city also held a candlelight vigil on Nov. 28 at Chesapeake City Park.