MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The grieving stretched from Charleston all the way to Memphis.
A group of University of Memphis law students organized a candlelight vigil Thursday.
Dozens of people of all backgrounds came together to remember those murdered at a bible study in a historic, African-American church in Charleston last week.
Dozens held hands under the sunset on the Mississippi River as they lit candles and said a prayer for each victim.
Saint Andrew A.M.E. Church Reverand Kenneth Robinson led the prayer as he remembered two victims he once knew: Rev. Clementa Pinckney and Rev. Daniel Simmons.
“We were in church that evening as well at the time we discovered the murders were occurring,” he said. “So the sense of vulnerability. This could have been any of us.”
Many asked why and how someone could do something so evil and were afraid that violence could happen here.
“It’s very scary to know there are people out there still thinking like that. People agree of the behavior of [suspect] Dylann Roof,” said organizer Regina Thompson. “We don’t want to respond with hatred and violence. Instead, we want to respond in peace.”
The group had one common goal: to spread peace and love, demand justice and pray no more lives are lost to violence and hate.