Memorials reach a whole new level
They’re sites dedicated to remembering those lives cut tragically short where people gather to grieve. They’re also the sites that mark where violence has taken place and where it sometimes continues.
They’re sites dedicated to remembering those lives cut tragically short where people gather to grieve.
They’re also the sites that mark where violence has taken place and where it sometimes continues.
Makeshift memorials to homicide victims can range from a few candles on a sidewalk to what has recently appeared at the sites of two high-profile murders — graffiti on storefronts and sidewalks and dozens of mementos left out for weeks.
The intensity of those memorials has some neighbors wanting them removed sooner, saying they are a constant reminder of the violence.
“I understand people grieve differently. … But people should take some consideration for the community,” said Don Richardson, 62, who walked by the memorial to Tahitia Milton, a mother slain inside a Warren Street convenience store Oct. 23.
City councilors held a hearing on the issue in 2006 when residents voiced concerns over the memorials after a woman was shot while visiting one for her slain brother. No one from the city could confirm the outcome, if any, of that hearing.
Earlier this year, a man visiting a memorial for his friend in Dorchester got into a gunfight with police and eventually shot himself.
Yesterday on Woolson Street in Mattapan where five people, including a toddler, were shot on Sept. 28, the sidewalk was wet and the scent of a chemical cleanser still lingered.
It appeared the memorial, which included feet of spray-painted sidewalk and dozens of candles and posters, was recently taken down.
That was good news for one resident walking the street yesterday.
“It should be taken down because who wants to keep going by that,” said a woman who wouldn’t give her name, but said she’s lived in the Mattapan neighborhood for 26 years. “It’s a painful reminder. Two weeks and then take it down.”