KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – A vigil was held Saturday in east Knoxville to remember the victims in last week’s deadly shooting at a Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs. People just wanted to come together to show unity and solidarity, wanting to heal, unite and speak up against violence.
Name by name all three victims killed in the Colorado Springs shooting were remembered. It was all a part of a national day of solidarity, speaking out against violence and hateful speech directed at the non-profit organization that provides reproductive health services.
“In remembrance of Ke’Arre Stewart, a 29-year-old Iraq War veteran and father of two…we have to say that enough is enough,” said Tory Mills with Planned Parenthood.
Dozens of people gathered outside of the Planned Parenthood here in town to unite, discuss and share their thoughts. John Johnson, lives in Knoxville and doesn’t understand why suspected killer Robert Lewis Dear would do such a thing.
“They’re not good American’s. They don’t believe in freedom, they don’t believe in the constitution and they want to take away our freedom…We’re supposed to live in a free society and you’re going to have a person gun down a women’s’ health care clinic, that’s pathetic,” he said.
People were making a stance against violence and intimidation, because Mills said it affects multiple communities.
“We don’t believe that anyone should be attacked for wanting to access basic reproductive healthcare services or for going to work…The black community, immigrant community, the LGBT communities, we’re all affected,” said Mills.
Vigils were held in more than 50 other locations across the country Saturday, including places like Nashville, Denver, and Washington, D.C.