Hampered by the coronavirus pandemic, the 24th annual Mother’s Day Walk for Peace unfolded online, bringing together citizens and public officials in a virtual forum to raise money for victims of homicide and share heartbreaking stories.
The event, emceed by NBC10 Boston anchor Latoyia Edwards, was sponsored by the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute, a Boston-based non-profit.
“We needed to show up,” said Clementina Chéry, the organization’s president. “This was the time to do it.”
Instead of gathering in person, participants walked alone.
Several public officials — including Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins and Boston Police Commissioner William Gross — taped pre-recorded messages that aired during the online event.
Chéry reminded viewers that violence, especially homicide, is still a problem, even during the pandemic.
Family members of victims also joined the online event to share their personal stories.
“My son was murdered, and the reason I walk today is because of him and other survivors,” said Sharon Baker of Brockton, Massachusetts. “We’ll never get over this, but the oomph that Tina [Chéry] brings to the organization, to us women, men, survivors teaches how to cope.”
The goal was to raise at least $400,000. The non-profit hasn’t yet released a final figure.