‘Ride of Tears’ brings hope for a less violent year in Memphis


MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Nearly a dozen community members gathered outside a police precinct Saturday morning to discuss what it will take for positive change in our community.

Violence has claimed the lives of many in our area but there is hope, this year will not be a repeat of 2020. In the freezing cold, neighbors, activists, and families touched by violence say they will not be frozen with fear when it comes to speaking up against anything corrupting their communities.

They prayed.

Standing shoulder to shoulder, and some of them embracing, while others stood expressing themselves with written words. They shared messages of hope and healing even from those who are still reeling from the effects of violence.

The family of Jordyn Washington, an 8-year-old girl shot and killed inside the home of her grandmother in November, is still picking up the pieces.

“When you took my grandbaby, you took a piece of my heart,” Sammie Washington, Jordyn’s grandmother, said. “All of these kids that are losing their lives over this senseless gun violence think before you pull that trigger.”

But there’s even more those braving these temperatures, are hoping will come from this gathering.    Organizers with a strong message to city and county leaders, who they say, must be held accountable.

“We only see these people when it’s time to elect. that ends 2021,” Diamond Mourning, of Ride of Tears, said.

From policing to politics, these community members and activists really outlining many of the issues today. But they say their focus is on finding specific solutions to those problems that continue to plague our area.

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