Homicide victims remembered at memorial service

DAYTON – It’s a ministry the Sisters of the Precious Blood hope will someday go out of business.

The annual homicide vigil memorial service Jan. 11 at Salem Heights helped remember all 34 people killed by violence in Dayton, Trotwood and Harrison Township in 2013. The event drew community members, law enforcement officials and family members of the victims. About 20 sisters also attended.

Montgomery County Sheriff Resource Officer Larry Lane and Laura Phillips, a member of Trotwood Church of the Brethren, read aloud the names and ages of each person who died. A chime rang out and a small candle was lighted for each name read.

Family members wept quietly and later shared stories of their loved ones.

The memorial service is an outgrowth of the homicide vigils Sisters of the Precious Blood organize each time a person is killed by violence in the Dayton area. Sisters and church members gather at the site of homicide to pray and remember the victim. They are sometimes joined by local residents or passersby.

The vigils are held on Saturdays following the homicide and typically attract 15-20 people. The gatherings originally began in the late 1990s, but were suspended for several years. The practice was restarted in 2006.
 
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