COLUMBUS (WCMH) – With another violent weekend in Columbus, the calls to put the guns down are growing louder.
The group Mothers of Murdered Columbus Children gathered at the steps of Columbus City Hall Sunday, marching through the downtown area spreading their message of enough is enough.
Sister soldiers, as members of the group call themselves, are grateful they have each other but don’t want any more members to join the group because that would mean another life has been taken too soon.
“So that was my son in a nutshell,” said Jacqueline Casimire.
She holds her son’s photo, remembering all the times he made her laugh. He was a performer, a lifeguard, a football player, and a father. Last September, just after his 30 birthday, he was killed.
“I do this because this pain is not something I want any mother to ever experience,” Casimire said. “So if I can take my pain and reach one potential predator, that’s what I hope for. Just to avoid another mother having to join this sister circle.”
The group set up a casket outside City Hall as a symbol, representing their children, and also to symbolize they are burying the violence.
The mothers also stopped at the intersection of Broad and High streets to read the names and dates of the children members lost.
“It felt powerful, but then on the other side, it felt painful,” Casimire said. “There’s no way we should have to do this. I’m proud of all of us, but I hope the city hears us. I hope it’s getting out.”
Columbus Chief of Police Elaine Bryant joined the protest, reminding everyone how important it is to come forward with any information about crime in the city.
“Put these guns down,” Bryant said. “OK? Put the guns down. One life is one too many. I don’t look at numbers because one life is one too many.”
That’s a message being shared by Casimire with her grandchildren alongside her.
“This is about their future as well,” she said. “We have to get this violence under control. It’s a little too familiar to me. My son’s father was killed, my son was killed, my grandchildren cannot be killed.”