KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A group of students coming together with Mothers in Charge to understand how violence affects our community. Each year on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. day Mothers in Charge speaks out. The anti-violence group reminds us that Dr. King was a homicide victim.
“Mothers in Charge are mothers, grandmothers, fathers, families that have been victimized by homicide,” Rosilyn Temple, the founder of Mothers in Charge, told a group of students.
It’s a different kind of lesson for them on the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday from Rockhurst University.
“Every year on Martin Luther King day as a community we go out and we serve at different sites, and this is just the site I signed up for this year,” 21-year-old Stephanie Lopez said.
Lopez is a junior and nursing student at Rockhurst. She said in the past she volunteered her time on the holiday, but this year was different. The group reminded the students that Dr. King himself was a murder victim. Temple’s son was murdered seven years ago, and she visits every homicide scene in Kansas City she can to help other victims.
“The peace was there, and I truly believe Dr. Martin Luther King’s spirit was there for us to coming together all ages and colors, no denomination,” Temple said. “We just standing for one thing. For peace and unity.”
“I have had the privilege of not having to worry about these things until I came to Kansas City,” Lopez said. “They were really powerful words from these women who have lost their children.”
The group took a moment to pray and recognize the loss these families feel each day. In this moment of peace and harmony there was another shooting in Kansas City. A man killed on Oak Leaf Drive in the Eastwood Hills. Temple left the event to head to the scene.
“I wouldn’t even go in there and tell them that I’m getting ready to leave for that, because I don’t want to take away that peace that they were given that we all shared together moments before, and now we have to hear that there is another homicide in our community,” Temple said.
“[It’s] truly amazing and remarkable to see that there is people out there fighting these truly dark things and finding the light through it all,” Lopez said.
The mothers who attended the event said it meant the world to see young people taking the time to hear about the children they’ve lost, and listen to their stories.