NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A justice march at Centennial Park ended up shutting down West End Saturday afternoon.
The group gathered following the recent shooting deaths of two black men by police officers in other states.
Jordan Gaither, who is a student at Tennessee State University, posted a flyer on Instagram, and it quickly spread drawing hundreds in support.
“The main thing that I wanted to do tonight was unite and let the city know we need to be there for each other,” Gathier explained to News 2.
“No peace, no justice” echoed throughout the crowd.
A few Metro police officers showed up to watch over the gathering.
“We want all the people that’s gathered here to get their message out to do it in a safe manner,” Commander Natalie Lokey said.
As the crowd grew, so did the security. Dozens of Tennessee Highway Patrol cars lined the streets, as a helicopter circled above.
Metro police followed along handing out water, food and offering rides to the crowd as they marched down West End to 17th Avenue and then back up Church Street.
The crowd stopped traffic several times as they formed a circle of unity.
“I’ve got a lot of faith in the people of Nashville. This is where we are supposed to be, this is what we are supposed to be doing. We don’t stop,” explained Officer Lokey.
Organizers told the crowd their efforts don’t end here, but start here.
“Lives matter. We matter. The people matter and if people understand that we matter, then I think we can go forward with this,” said Gathier.