Ribbons for a Reason: Asbury Memorial UMC calls for an end to gun violence, stricter gun laws

Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church held a memorial on Wednesday, July 1 to honor victims lost to gun violence and call for stricter gun control laws.
Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church on the Savannah's East side.
Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church on the Savannah’s East side.

In Chatham County, dozens have lost their lives to gun violence…In 2015 alone–19 people have already been killed.

And local church, Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church, in Savannah calling for a change.

On Wednesday afternoon, a ribbon ceremony was held to honor those from the community who were victims of gun violence.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015.
Wednesday, July 1, 2015.

Each ribbon represents a life lost… the dark orange for adults and the lighter orange for those victims who were under the age of 17.

Reverend Billy Hester says he wants to use today to remind the community that change will start with stricter laws on gun control.

“Ramon Anthony Mooney, Age 48…died January 1st…”

…And 18 more names followed– as Reverend Billy Hester of Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church and the community paid their respect to those who lost their lives at the hands of a gun…

Each ribbon represents a life lost due to gun violence in Chatham County.
Each ribbon represents a life lost due to gun violence in Chatham County.

“Let us pray for our leaders…and policy makers that God’s spirit might guide them to promote peace, education and understanding…hear us as we pray…enlighten us oh God”

“The more we’re educated about, the more we know about it, we want to do something about…,” said Revered Hester.

But he says that something isn’t necessarily what you think…

“It’s not about taking people’s guns away, but about having common sense laws. background checks…not [selling] automatic weapons…things like that, that are common sense,” Reverend Hester told News 3.

Church member EmBee McDaniel says she recently found out that the gun violence is all too real after a bullet shot right through her window on her drive home…

“A lot of things that could have happen, didn’t happen, thank god, and so my feeling was someone was watching over me…,”Ms. McDaniel said.

And Hester says he wants lawmakers to help us watch out for one another…

“As horrible as that was we can help those people not die in vain…and take action and make the world better because of what happened,” Reverend Hester said.

The memorial will remain on the gate throughout the year. Reverend Hester also told News 3 that a sign will be put up soon to explain the meaning of the memorial and how the community can help stop the local gun violence.

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