Rockford community honors shooting victims with prayer vigil

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Residents are mourning the tragedy at Don Carter Lanes by holding a prayer circle where police tape surrounded the area less than 24 hours ago.

It was a somber scene outside Don Carter Lanes Sunday afternoon as local religious leaders gathered together with community members to pray for the victims and their families.

In total, about 15 people came out to the vigil. After sharing their prayers, the group held a moment of silence. Rockford Pastor and vigil organizer Violet Johnicker says for her, the tragedy hit especially close to home.

“Our hearts were broken like so many in the community that just couldn’t believe this would happen in a place where we live, such senseless violence. My husband is a bowler, has bowled here many times, and knew some of the folks whose lives were lost yesterday, so we’re broken-hearted and grieving for their families,” said Pastor Violet Johnicker.

“We just want to make sure that people understand that this is not normal, and we’re not going to normalize it. Not going to let it be just another statistic, or anothing shooting that happened. No- lives were lost, and families are traumatized,” said Pastor K. Edward Copeland of New Zion Baptist Church.

Another vigil will be held in the parking lot of Don Carter Lanes on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.


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