Thursday, June 18, 2015

They Have a Name-The 9 Victims of the AME Church Massacre

Media attention has largely been fixed on the perpetrator of Wednesday nights tragedy in Charleston South Carolina. Captured gunman Dylan Roof murdered 9 people and injured others after sitting with the congregation for prayer for a full hour, before he began his hateful murderous rampage. Many of the headlines concerning this incident are about him, and transfixed on why he may have committed these crimes. The criminal's name is often carved in our  minds and the people who fall victim to the crimes are often forgotten, as their names are hardly spoken. Very little is ever known of them, and we are hardly ever shown a photograph, yet it's these people that deserve a memorial. 

Throughout the country, vigils were held to commemorate the dead and to honor the lives they had lived. Below are the nine ordinary people taken from the world before their time. 

By Queen
Instagram @TheQueenspeaks_    


Header photo via AP
1. Rev. Clementa Pinckney, 41

Source: The State/Getty Images

The 41-year-old pastor and South Carolina state senator was the most publicly known victim of Wednesday night's shooting. Previously, Pinckney had been well-known as a community activist and supported legislation requiring police to wear body cameras. The senator also served on the Southern Mutual Insurance Company's board of directors. He leaves behind a wife and two children, according to an official government website. 
2. Cynthia Hurd, 54

According to her employer, the Charleston County Public Library, Cynthia Hurd "dedicated her life to serving and improving the lives of others." Photos of Hurd smiling can be seen on the library's Flickr page. In honor of her death and 31 years of service, the library announced it would close all its branches Thursday. "Her loss is incomprehensible," the CCPL said, Buzzfeed reported
3. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, 45

We love you, Coach Singleton. Gator Nation is where it is today because of your leadership. You have our thoughts and prayers.
Posted by The Goose Creek Gators on Thursday, June 18, 2015

Pinckney wasn't the only religious leader taken in Wednesday's massacre. Another reverend at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, Sharonda Coleman-Singleton was also a local high school track coach and a mother of three. The Facebook page of Goose Creek High School described their loss and said a vigil would be held in Coleman-Singleton's honor at 7:00 p.m. Thursday. Her son Chris also asked for prayers from his Twitter account.

4. Tywanza Sanders, 26

Source: Facebook

The banner of Tywanza Sanders' Facebook page reads "your dreams are calling you." For him, that meant a degree from Allen University in Columbia, South Carolina, in their Division of Business Administration in 2014. Sanders, who friends suggested was shy, had expressed an interest in broadcasting. In a statement reported byBuzzfeedthe school's vice president of Institutional Advancement, Flavia Eldemire, said Sanders was "a quiet, well-known student who was committed to his education." Initial reports indicate he died while protecting other members of his family.
5. Myra Thompson, 59

Please join me in praying for the Rev. Anthony Thompson, Vicar of Holy Trinity REC (ACNA) Church in Charleston, his...
Posted by Archbishop Foley Beach on Thursday, June 18, 2015

Myra Thompson was the wife of another religious figure, Rev. Anthony Thompson, the vicar of Holy Trinity Reformed Episcopal Church in Charleston. Church official Archbishop Foley Beach asked followers to pray in the aftermath.

6. Ethel Lee Lance, 70

Ethel Lee Lance was a grandmother and sexton at Emanuel AME when her life was taken. Her grandson Jon Quil Lance told the Post and Courier, "Granny was the heart of the family," and added she had worked in the church for more than three decades. 

7. Susie Jackson, 87

Another grandmother, Susie Jackson was also a longtime member of Emanuel AME and was identified as a victim by a relative. She was also Lance's cousin, according to the Post and Courier
8. Daniel L. Simmons, 74

The only victim who did not die at the church, 74-year-old Daniel Simmons succumbed to his injuries at a local hospital, authorities said at a press conference Thursday. Simmons, a retired pastor from another church, regularly attended Wednesday Bible study services at Emanuel AME and June 17, 2015 was, tragically, no exception, ABC News reported

9. Depayne Middleton Doctor, 49

According to her LinkedIn profile, Doctor worked as a former manager of the U.S. Department of Commerce and graduated from Southern Wesleyan University with a Master's degree, Organizational Management. 

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