‘It was beautiful’: Community marches against violence

Published 1:12 pm Wednesday, July 6, 2022

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Franklin Brothers Keepers led a community march against violence Monday morning, July 4, through areas of the city that have been impacted by shootings in the past, praying for unity and peace.

Keith Rose, vice president of Franklin Brothers Keepers, said the event went exceedingly well.

“It was excellent because it brought tears to your eyes,” he said. “Everybody joined together in a good cause.”

Franklin Police Department helped orchestrate the march, leading it and making sure the way was clear. The procession started at First Baptist Church on Hall Street and traveled down different streets, including Bogart Street, Bruce Street and South Street.

Trailing a couple police vehicles were a fleet of motorcyclists, then marchers on foot and then several more vehicles, including one from Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore.

Joining the march were several members of the local clergy and City Council members Wynndolyn H. Copeland, Dr. Linwood Johnson, Mark R. Kitchen and Gregory McLemore.

The event, which was also made possible by Women of Grace, Strength and Dignity, also featured food, provided at 1316 South St.

“Our meeting up there, we fed all day, and a lot of different groups and kids and teenagers came up, and we talked to them, positively,” Rose said. “We weren’t blaming anybody. We were just saying, ‘We’ve got something better. We’re here for you.’”