Memorial Wall

Click on photos to read the stories, or select a page below.

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
~George Santayana

January 27th:
International Holocaust Remembrance Day
January 27th, 2005

This day commemorates the genocide that resulted in the death of an estimated 6 million Jews, 1 million Roma, 250,000 mentally and physically disabled people, and 9,000 homosexual men by the Nazi regime and its collaborators during World War Two. Aside from getting murdered, people were placed in concentration camps and abused in various ways: through starvation, medical neglect, torture, physical abuse, rape, sexual abuse of children, indescribable emotional abuse obviously, and various other forms of trauma.


Posted by Manya on January 27th, 2015

January 28th:
T.J
died on January 28th, 2011

We spent grade ten art class together, we sat at the same table, we talked and were friends. Words cannot express how tragic it was when you went missing, and no one expected that it would end this way. I mean, people go missing and show up just fine in this town all the time, right? I had to leave the town, I couldn't stand going pas that place they found you, such a well known place, it just blows my mind. RIP


Posted by S on November 13th, 2013

Lareeb Khan
died on January 28th, 2015

Lareeb, a 19yo dental technician from Germany, was a victim of honour killing. Her mom said, "Lareeb stayed away from the home for several nights in a row and stopped wearing the headscarf. One day we received a letter from the police saying she had been caught trying to steal condoms. At this point it became clear that there was sexual contact. When I showed the letter to my husband he snapped." Lareeb was grounded and beaten, but continued seeing her boyfriend. One night her father strangled her to death with his bare hands. The judge said, "You lived in two cultural worlds. It is not the case that you may not be allowed to live in your own culture. But you must also deal with our values."


Posted by Manya on July 5th, 2016

January 29th:
Birthday of Oprah Winfrey
born on January 29th, 1954

Oprah Winfrey Actress,chat show host and philanthropist. Winfrey was born into extreme poverty and has said she was raped at 9, and abused and molested by her cousin,uncle and family friend. At 13 she ran away from home,became pregnant and gave birth to a son who died shortly afterwards. Throughout her childhood she faced neglect and racism. She blames her weight problems on her emotional turmoil and cites her grandmother Hattie Mae as the one who offered her encouragement to speak in public and the one "who gave me a positive sense of myself..." She has appeared in many films and has also wriiten many articles. She has done much for the poor children of South Africa and has opened Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls near Johannesburg. She is reputed to be the most influencial woman in America and rates as one of the most wealthy Afro American too.


Posted by eagle22 on October 8th, 2015

January 31st:
Prince v. Massachusetts Ruling
January 31st, 1944

Sarah Prince, a Jehovah's Witness, was a guardian of 9yo Betty M. Simmons, whom she brought downtown to preach on the streets. Preaching involved distributing literature and collecting contributions. Child labor law in Massachusetts at the time forbade boys under 12 and girls under 18 to sell anything on streets, because it's dangerous and unsanitary. Mrs Prince, however, argued that the state is interfering with her parenting and with her and Betty's right to exercise their religion. The historical US Supreme Court Decision was that parental authority is not absolute and can be permissibly restricted if doing so is in the interests of a child's welfare:

...neither the rights of religion nor the rights of parenthood are beyond limitation... The right to practice religion freely does not include the right to expose the community or the child to communicable disease or the latter to ill-health or death (...) Parents may be free to become martyrs themselves. But it does not follow they are free, in identical circumstances, to make martyrs of their children before they have reached the age of full and legal discretion when they can make that choice for themselves.


Posted by Anonymous on August 12th, 2015

February 1st:
Rebecca Eldemire
died on February 1st, 2015

21yo Rebecca from Ohio, USA, was a junior student at Miami University, geography major. She was killed by her boyfriend the day after they broke up. He took it hard, so hard that she called the police for protection when she discovered he's coming to her house the next day. But when he arrived and was frisked by the police (because she knew he had guns and was concerned about it) - they spoke some and she let him in and told the police officers all was fine. When the police left, he went back to his car, got his gun, shot Rebecca, and then himself. miamistudents.net published a great page titled "The Becca We Remember," with tons of people who knew Rebecca sharing what she was like. "We don’t want her to be remembered just as the girl who died," said Alicia. "We want her to be known as the girl who lived; a girl who had a strong spirit and loved everything on the Earth."


Posted by Manya on June 26th, 2016

February 5th:
Amy Dye
died on February 5th, 2011

Amy was a 9yo girl from Kentucky who stayed with a foster family and was beaten to death. At first her 17yo adoptive brother was charged with murder and plead guilty, but his conviction was overturned by the Supreme Court because investigating police officers coerced him to confess. It's unclear who killed Amy, but here were CPS reports alleging she was abused starting from 2007. On one occasion she was beat up by her oldest brother, but foster mom threatened to spank Amy if she told anyone. Ryan Craig, owner of local newspaper who was covering the case and filed the open records request for the abuse reports, said "Amy Dye should not have been in that home. You can place blame anywhere you want to, but the bottom line is that when we got those records, it showed that she should not have been in that home.".


Posted by Manya on February 27th, 2016

February 6th:
International Day of Zero Tolerance to FGM
February 6th, 2003

Female Genital Mutilation is the ritual removal of some or all of the external female genitalia. Typically carried out by a traditional circumciser using a blade or razor (with or without anaesthesia), FGM is concentrated in 27 African countries, Yemen and Iraqi Kurdistan, and found elsewhere in Asia, the Middle East, and among diaspora communities around the world. The age at which it is conducted varies from days after birth to puberty; in half the countries for which national figures are available, most girls are cut before the age of five. FGM has been outlawed or restricted in most of the countries in which it occurs, but the laws are poorly enforced. Over 130 million women and girls have experienced it.


Posted by Anonymous on February 6th, 2014

Birthday of Axl Rose
born on February 6th, 1962

Axl Rose. Songwriter and musician. Lead vocalist and only remaining original member of Guns N' Roses. Axl Rose has been voted one of the best rock singers of all time. Born into a Pentecostal family which he later described as oppressive Rose would exhibit during his late teens what a psychiatrist would conclude as evidence of pyschosis. At 26 he was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder. In 1992,after undergoing past life regression therapy he uncovered memories of being sexually abused by his biological father aged 2yo. He also stated that he was physically abused by his stepfather.. A staunch believer in homeopathy and past life regression therapy he would later claim that the early CSA stopped his emotional growth at two. He was quoted as saying "..when they talk about Axl Rose being a screaming two year old they are right..."


Posted by eagle22 on October 6th, 2015

Lydia Schatz
died on February 6th, 2010

In 2007 Lydia and her sister Zariah were adopted from Liberia by a Californian family that claimed to follow the teachings about child discipline of the "No Greater Joy Ministries", a Fundamentalist Christian organization. On February 5th, 2010, 7yo Lydia and 11yo Zaria were severely beaten (aka "disciplined") for nine hours with a plumbing line, because Zariah was "being a liar and a bad influence on the 7-year-old," and Lydia had mispronounced a word during a homeschooling lesson. Zariah survived, though suffered kidney failure and other injuries. Lydia died in the hospital the next day.


Posted by Zoe on August 26th, 2011

February 7th:
Charles Dickens
born on February 7th, 1812

Oliver Twist, Dickens' second novel, is the first in the English language to centre upon an abused child (or any child for that matter). The book calls attention to various contemporary social evils, including child labour and the recruitment of children as criminals. Written more than two hundred years ago, it still provides consolation to those who were abused as children, as, while social structures and laws change, we all can relate to the general feeling of helplessness and despair of being treated unfairly, being unloved, and not knowing what have we done to cause this or how to fix it.


Posted by Manya on September 8th, 2015

February 9th:
Birthday of Alice Walker
born on February 9th, 1944

Alice Walker. Author,poet,activist. Born into a poor family and the youngest of eight children,Alice's mother pushed for her education working 11 hrs a day for $17 a week to help pay for Alice to attend college. In 1952 Alice was wounded in her right eye by a shot from a BB gun fired by one of her brothers. She would later state that he did this on purpose. She became blind in that eye due to not receiving early treatment but would go on to say that her traumatic injury allowed her to begin "..to see people and things,really to notice relationships and to learn to be patient enough to care about how they turned out.." After graduation Walker became interested in US Civil Rights Movement and became involved in voter registration,campaigns for welfare rights and various children's programs. She has written many books including Meridian ( 1976),a semiautobiographical narrative based upon her experiences in the 1960s. In it she deals with the social,racial and sexual upheavals that the Civil Rights and Black Power era produced. Her website (alicewalkersgarden.com) describes her as someone who believes "..that learning to extend the range of our compassion is activity and work available to all.." Walker also speaks of how a pregnancy and abortion during her senior year of college led her to becoming severely depressed and suicidal. This emotional trauma pushed her to write her first book of poems "Once" Walker was the first black woman to win the Pulitizer Prize


Posted by eagle22 on October 8th, 2015

February 11th:
My sister
died on February 11th, 2007

Sorry was not there for you, but could not do it anymore missed you for so many years and to have heard of your suicide hurts so bad, hopefully you have now found peace


Posted by dfk on November 2nd, 2008

Ozgecan Aslan
died on February 11th, 2015

Ozgecan was a 19yo Psychology student from Mersin, Turkey. She had loving parents (her mom returned to workforce to fund her education) and an older sister with whom Ozgecan shared love of opera. On February 11th, 2015, Ozgecan was riding a minibus home, after going to a mall with her friend. The driver assaulted her, attempted to rape, but she resisted: scratched his face with her fingernails, and used pepper spray. In response to this, the driver stabbed her multiple times, beat her to death with an iron rod, and then asked his father and his friend for help disposing of the body (which they provided).

The case resulted in nationwide outrage and protests across the country, and was described as the first mass movement for Turkish women.


Posted by Manya on November 2nd, 2015

February 12th:
Aurore Gagnon
died on February 12th, 1920

Aurore was a 10yo girl from Quebec, Canada, who was killed by her stepmom. Her birth mom died of tuberculosis, and her dad remarried. Shortly after, Aurore's younger brother was found dead and the neighbors were suspicious. In September of 1919, 10yo Aurore was hospitalized for more than a month because of a leg infection caused by physical abuse: her stepmom used to beat her with an axe handle. When Aurore was discharged, the beatings continued, and on February 12th the girl passed away from septicemia (infection from wounds entered her bloodstream and she died as a result). The story of l'enfant martyre (The Child Martyr) received great attention in the media and Aurore became an icon of Quebec sociological and popular culture.


Posted by Manya on February 27th, 2016

James Bulger
died on February 12th, 1993

James Patrick Bulger was a 2yo boy from UK who was abducted at a local shopping centre, tortured, and murdered by two ten-year-old boys, the youngest convicted murderers in modern English history. The boys were released from custody when they turned 18, but one of them, Jon Venables, had committed various offences since, including child porn distribution. The case has prompted widespread debate on the issue of how to handle young offenders when they are sentenced or released from custody.


Posted by Manya on April 18th, 2014

February 16th:
Blake Litton
died on February 16th, 2012

3yo Blake from Missouri, USA, lived with his mom, little sister, and mom's boyfriend. One evening their mom was at work at a nursing home, and the stepdad took Faith and Blake to Walmart. Blake soiled his pants, and the man "lost it," as he later texted Blake's mom. He beat Blake so badly that the boy's body was covered in cuts and bruises, he had a lacerated liver, and a ruptured blood vessel in his brain. Once the man calmed down and realized Blake was seriously hurt, he took both kids to their mom's work, saying that he loves her but he can't call ambulance for Blake because he'll end up in prison for life. Blake's mom told him to take Blake to emergency room anyway and went back to work. The man drove off with both kids, stopped on a highway and called 911, saying that Blake was just hit by a car. By that time (5AM) the mom finished her shift and arrived at the scene as she was walking home. When hospital staff saw Blake's injuries, they called the police. His sister also had cuts, bruises, and a broken wrist.

Blake died the next day, the man was imprisoned for life, mom is still pending trial on murder charges (because Blake might have survived had she called 911 immediately). Blake's little sister lives with her grandparents, and was the one who told the story of what happened, because she saw it all: how Blake soiled his pants at Walmart, how the man was punching Blake in the bathroom, how he drove her and her unconscious brother to mom's work in the middle of the night, how mom left them with him and went back to work, and how the man staged the hit-and-run that never happened.


Posted by Manya on July 18th, 2016

February 18th:
Dwelle Jerome Clark
died on February 18th, 2014

55yo Dwelle Clark from New Jersey, USA, was stabbed to death by his ex-girlfriend. He caught her rummaging through his mother's handbag, asked her to stop it, she started hitting him with a walking cane, he left the room, and she followed him with a butcher knife and stabbed him in the chest. Mr Clark died three days later. Their daughter said, "My mom is a drug addict, but she hasn’t been using lately because she’s trying to get herself together. In a situation like that, it doesn’t take much for (an addict) to snap. This is not the first time my mom has snapped like this." "I really don’t know what to think," she added. "It’s just a sad situation. She’s locked up and he’s no longer here." The woman has stabbed her previous boyfriend to death in 1980, and served prison time for it. "I’m guilty," she said. "So what else can I do?"


Posted by Manya on March 27th, 2016

February 19th:
Jeff Akers
died on February 19th, 2008

50yo Jeff Akers from UK was stabbed to death in a public bathroom because he was gay. Mr Akers worked as an accountant and volunteered for HIV/AIDS charities, counseling other gay people who had contacted the disease. "Guys like Jeff seem few and far between... he was gentle but firm when needed, kind and giving, non-judgmental and while he had a serious side he could make you laugh and brighten the moment with his wicked sense of humor. Jeff had a wealth of experience he never hesitated to share and encourage others with if called on for help. He took so little when giving so much to those around him." David Jack, friend.


Posted by Manya on June 26th, 2016

February 20th:
Steve Rhinehart
died on February 20th, 2012

62yo Mr Rhinehart, a retired contractor and farmer from Georgia, USA, had a wife, two grown kids, and a cattle dog Sadie. His 36yo son struggled with depression, anxiety, and substance abuse, and moved back with his parents. As time went on, Mr Rhinehart insisted that he move out, because he would neither get a job nor receive treatment. The son felt his mom alone would take care of him, wanted them to divorce, and when that didn't happen, he killed his father. "I just pulled the gun out, continued to walk up the hill and around the corner and met him and just shot him, right in the chest," he said.


Posted by Manya on July 29th, 2016


A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.
~ Winston Churchill
This page was last updated on December 8th, 2016
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