MEMPHIS, Tenn--Across Memphis and Shelby County the holiday season is officially here, but for many this is also the Season of Remembrance for families who've lost loved ones to violence.
Calvin Holloway is a father who knows the feeling. His son's life was taken away by a killer. Appearing on Live at 9, Holloway talked about how he lives with the grief every second, minute, hour and day.
"These days kids don't think. I mean the young man that is charged with taking his(Holloway's son) life. I feel sorry for him as well as many son because he destroyed his life and he destroyed my life," Holloway said.
Holloway is not alone. He and other families have similar stories of loss and many will gather at Memphis City Hall for the Shelby County District Attorney's seventh annual Season of Remembrance ceremony.
Amy Weirich is Shelby County District Attorney General.
"We hope that it's a time of support for them. That it's an opportunity for them to come together, meet other families who are suffering through violence and with us listening to the headlines this weekend, there's too much violence in the community and too many families have been struck by it," Weirich said.
During the solemn event, names of the victims are read aloud as family members place an ornament that displays their loved one's name on a christmas tree.
"We ask the community to come out and watch as the victims' names are read out and family member make that walk to the front with those ornaments. This is something we all pay the price for," Weirich said.
Weirich says some Tennessee laws have gotten tougher on criminals, but she says more needs to be done to help rehabilitate offenders because many will be released from jail and more needs be done to reach young people to deter them from crime.
"The children who grow up in homes exposed to violence are much more likely to be come the next generation of victims and defendants themselves. We as a community have got to do more to reduce those numbers the police department can't do it by themselves and the D.A.'s office can't do it. It takes everything from Neighborhood Watch, to mentoring organizations to making sure children are in school," Weirich said.
It's a message families of crime victims hope will inspire a community and change the lives of younger generation.
"These kids don't think. they think a knife and gun is the answer. that's not the solution to the problem. the answer is to walk way," Holloway said.
A Season of Remembrance ceremony gets underway Monday at 5:30 at City Hall.