"Recuerdos" was the theme of the third annual Petals of the Lake event where families took the time to gather and remember their loved ones whose lives were cut too short by violent crimes.
"We understand the love and the loss that you have gone through. Nothing will replace our loved ones," said Marina Macias with the Rio Grand Valley Empowerment Zone. "No words, or comfort, or acts of kindness can bring back our loved ones."
On Tuesday, families of crime victims along with friends and community members remembered the lives lost their a special memorial. An alter was placed at the front of the room with photos of the deceased and a slide show was played that depicted a special moment in their lives.
Macias and the RGVEZ team were inspired by the 2017 Disney movie "Coco." Macias reminded the families how important it is to keep a loved ones memory alive.
In 2007, Congress designated Sept. 25 as the National Day of Remembrance for Murder Victims. Robert and Charlotte Hullinger, of Cincinnati, formed Parents of Murdered Children following the 1978 murder of their 19-year-old daughter, Lisa, while she was studying in Germany. The annual day of observance is on the date Lisa was murdered.
The annual National Day of Remembrance for Murder Victims gives everyone the opportunity to remember those lost to homicide, and honor their memories. The purpose of this day of remembrance is to focus on the impact of murder on families and communities, and ways to support and serve survivors.
"We make these events because this is our way of grieving, our way of therapy, our was of remembering our loved ones," Macias said.
The event is usually held at Lake Findley. Due to the recent rain, the event was moved to St. Joseph Catholic Church parish hall.
Macias urged families to take a box of red petals with them and spread them over the lake when the flooding resides to keep the tradition alive.