Hundreds turn out to remember victims of violent crimes - WSMV Channel 4

Hundreds turn out to remember victims of violent crimes

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CLARKSVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

This is the time of year when many are preparing to spend the holidays with family and friends. But for hundreds of people in one community, the holidays are just a painful reminder of what they've lost.

On Wednesday night, Clarksville paused to remember victims of violent crimes. The community's been holding the On the Wings of Love ceremony for 15 years. Each year the list of names just gets longer. This year there were 362.

One by one family, friends and neighbors read the names of those whose lives were cut short. They were mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers, all victims of violent crimes.

Hundreds gathered at the Montgomery County Library in Clarksville for a somber Christmas ceremony. Each person hung an ornament with the victim's name on a Christmas tree to honor their loved ones' memory.

"We're in a club that none of us every chose to be in," said Fairlen Browning, president of Parents of Murdered Children.

She too knows the anguish those left behind are feeling. Her 7-month-old daughter Lyanna was murdered by her father back in 2007.

"To be around a group of people who share the similarity of the tragedy that I've gone through and to see the strength of others is always an encouragement," Browning explained.

"I think I'll always cry for my child," Cindy Rose explained.

Rose also drew strength from tonight's event. Six weeks ago her son Jason was gunned down at a Halloween party while trying to save others.

"Seeing other people grieving you know other people going through it too you kind of know. I mean it kind of helps you some," Rose said.

But for many justice still eludes their loved ones, making their grief that much more unbearable, and all the more frustrating for District Attorney General John Carney.

"We go home at night and we want to know that we've done the best that we can helping to prosecute the case and be responsible for people have done these violent crimes that are punished," said Carney.

Whether or not closure ever comes, their loved ones said God and community will see them through.

"The families do need continued support it goes far beyond the front page of the paper," Browning added.

Fifteen names were added to this year.  Fourteen of those fifteen were murdered in 2012.

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