Community Members Gather On Transgender Day Of Remembrance

Community members gathered on the Oskaloosa square to remember the victims of transgender violence.

Community members gathered in the Oskaloosa square to remember the victims of transgender violence.

by Ken Allsup
November 20, 2022

Oskaloosa, Iowa – Community members walked from St. Paul Congregational United Church of Christ to the square in downtown Oskaloosa Sunday night.

The walk was part of the national observance to honor the memory of the transgender people who lost their lives to acts of violence to transgender individuals.

The day of observance is held annually across the country and was started as the result of the 1998 murder of Rita Hester in Boston, Massachusetts.

In Oskaloosa, nearly 2 dozen people attended the gathering and read the names of 49 people alive last year but were killed by violence around the United States due to who they were.

“Let us remember those we have lost now by sharing their names,” said Chad Farner, organizer of the observance.

The names of those victims were shared by those in attendance. “We appreciate you coming and being a part of the ceremony. It’s meaningful to the families of these victims. It’s meaningful to those of us who care deeply about them.”

On the eve of the Transgender Day of Remembrance, a gunman opened fire inside an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

That gunman killed 5 people and injured another 25 before heroic clubgoers ended the violence.

President Joe Biden released a statement regarding the shootings. “While no motive in this attack is yet clear, we know that the LGBTQI+ community has been subjected to horrific hate violence in recent years. Gun violence continues to have a devastating and particular impact on LGBTQI+ communities across our nation and threats of violence are increasing.”

“Places that are supposed to be safe spaces of acceptance and celebration should never be turned into places of terror and violence. Yet it happens far too often. We must drive out the inequities that contribute to violence against LGBTQI+ people. We cannot and must not tolerate hate.”

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