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CFVC Candlelight Vigil

Posted by on Nov 7, 2014 in of Help, of Hope | 0 comments

Thank you to all that came out to our annual Candlelight Vigil, which was held on October 28, 2014 at the Park at City Center in Downtown Woodstock, Georgia.  The event is held each year to honor survivors of abuse and to mourn those lost to Intimate Partner Violence in the past year.  This year, a display of chairs represented the 71 domestic violence related fatalities in the State of Georgia this year.  A chair was selected to represent each victim as a symbol of our community’s loss – each death represents a family member missed at the dinner table, a coworker missed at the office, a friend missed during book club, a child missed by their classmates.

Silhouettes displayed around the park represented Cherokee County victims who lost their lives to Domestic Violence in recent years.  The silhouettes stand as “silent witnesses” to our event each year.


The event featured survivor speakers Chelsea and Maricela and a keynote address by Representative Mandi Ballinger.  Local music group, Highbeams, provided accompanying music for the vigil.

As candles were lit around the park, the names of victims from the State of Georgia who were lost this year were read by Heather Chamblee, Kayla Fillingim and Sheri Vaughan, prosecution-based advocates that join in partnership with us in our work to provide support victims and end domestic violence.  As the names were read, a drumbeat sounded every nine seconds, which is the rate at which a woman is abused by her partner in the United States.

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The vigil was held in remembrance of the following lives:

Annie Belle Jarrett, 63

Leonard McKeehan, 63

Lynn York , 66

Sondra Williams, 56

Jessica Schanae Nowell, 24

Susan Sheriff, 45

Shevonta Hardwick, 23

Katrina West, 36

Alicia Johnson, 53

Gladys Bailey, 66

Bridgette Holt, 47

Margaret Elizabeth Lawson, 86

Fu Li, 58

Melvina Dunlap, 62

Alexis Dodson, 37

Kristy Robinson, 37

Cheyanne Nicole Hair, 16

Pamela Hardy, 43

Jesus Dominguez, 4

Thelma Vinhal, 35

Euclides Guinato-Bernardes, 30

Lakendra Elam, 27

Terrence Norman, 28

Anisa Taylor, 34

Anne Pastizzo, 66

Daniel Garcia, 13

Kayla Garcia , 11

Marion Lamonte Wiggs, 40

Tyree Jevontae Burtin, 38

Haneefah Harris, 44

Tonya Moses-Charles, 44

Bridgette Flowers, 37

Jimmie “Bo” Faye Meeks, 50

Sheray Latriest Felton, age unknown

Maria Nunez McDaniel, 29

Betty Mulbah McClain, 45

Casey Nicole Mitchell, 33

Kathleen Sheehan, 45

Jennifer Gatewood, 25

Laurie Chumley, 38

Jason Forkin, 40

Patricia Murray, 32

Rubii Cross, 34

Natty Ortiz-Ramos, 43

Anthony Tirrell Murray, 30

Rashawn Jackson, 34

Melissa Kimsey, 30

Angela Whitten, 53

Katherine Landers, 41

Lauren Smart, 34

Jessica Osborn, 28

Navy Thuy Vo, 35

John Malone, 48

Phyllis Frazier, 51

Elois Anderson, 52

Lekeisha Williams, 33

Deborah Lindley, 45

Marisol Rodriguez, 32

Brandie Lawson, 27

Sharonda James, 40

Sharon Wilkins, 55

Rosella “Rose” Mitchell, 32

Dylan Conner, 6 months old

Destiny Clarke, 20

Kara Miller, 29

Paxton Miller, 21 months

Chheng Voight, 37

Treasey Wingo, 47

Jessica Arrendale, 33

Fran Taylor, 63

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Thanks to each of our speakers, CFVC Staff, Interns, Board and Volunteers, Beth Siegel, Target of Canton, the Cherokee County Domestic Violence Task Force, Fast Signs of Canton, Israel Holcomb, Highbeams, A Dove’s Nest, Woodstock High School Interact Club, Cherokee High School Art Department Woodstock Police Department Police Explorers, and the City of Woodstock Parks and Recreation Department for their assistance with making the vigil a successful event this year.

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Annual Candlelight Vigil to be Held October 28th

Posted by on Oct 7, 2014 in of Hope | 0 comments

CFVC Candlelight Vigil 2014 Flyer ANYONE color

On October 28, 2014, CFVC will host our annual Domestic Violence Candlelight Vigil, which seeks to memorialize the 71 Georgia residents killed in domestic violence incidents this year.  One of Georgia’s victims called Cherokee County, Georgia, home.  The event, held in observance of October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, also seeks to honor survivors of abuse and will also feature survivor speakers that have received services from CFVC along with Representative Mandi Ballinger.  The vigil will encourage the idea of community change, empowering attendees to make a better life for all families in Cherokee County.

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2013 Candlelight Vigil

Posted by on Oct 25, 2013 in of Hope | 0 comments

On October 8, 2013, as in years past, we came together to honor the victims and survivors of domestic violence and to remember those who lost their lives to this devastating and destructive crime at our Candlelight Vigil.



Individuals who lost their lives in our county in the last six years stood as silent witnesses to how dangerous this crime is.  Those represented included: Wanda Atkins, Minnie Carr, Casey Conley, Kimberly Davis, D. J. Elrod, Linda Johnson, Shannon Lawrence, Darlene Norrell, Lindsey Norrell, Maricruz Sandoval, Victor Sandoval and Julia Shaw.


Thankfully, there were no domestic violence deaths in Cherokee County this year.  Why is that?  Is it something that we are doing differently this year?  Did something make a difference in someone’s life that prevented her death?  Did she call out for help and was able to seek safe shelter?  Did she obtain a protective order?  Was the abuser arrested and the system held him accountable?  Did her faith community support her which gave her the courage to leave?  Did a neighbor speak out and let her know that there was help?  Or was it simply chance?

CFVC Executive Director, Meg Rogers, remarked that we may never know the answers, but that we do know that in the last 12 months:

There were 3,635 Domestic Violence calls to Law Enforcement for help.

That these victims represent every race, religion, nationality and social position in this county and that they are overwhelmingly female.

That 962 victims sought services at the Cherokee Family Violence Center.

That CFVC sheltered 97 women, children and men for 4,213 nights in our safe shelter and were at 96% capacity for the year.

That CFVC assisted 251 women and children with affordable housing.

That CFVC assisted 193 victims through our Multicultural Program.

That CFVC assisted 449 victims though our Legal Advocacy program with protective orders, immigration assistance, custody cases and divorces.

That CFVC made 30 presentations to 1,059 individuals through Cherokee County about Domestic Violence and the effects on victims and our community.

That CFVC developed 877 safety plans with victims and their children.

And that CFVC provided a combined 20,023 services to these families.

Is that what made the difference?  Did we save lives?  We would like to think so, although we may never know.  The point is that Domestic Violence is the leading cause of non-accidental injury in the United States.  It kills 1,500 victims every year in this country and that we all have a role to play: to speak out against it, to support victims as they navigate the almost impossible choices to become safe, to teach our boys to respect girls, to teach our girls that they deserve better, to change the cultural discourse that violence, jealousy, and control is not love.  We all have a role in stopping this violence for this generation and the next; to speak out, to stand up, and to say “no more!”  We also need to let our elected officials that we need strong laws that are effectively enforced.  And that we need funding to help families heal.

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We would like to say thank you to those that attended this year’s event, Pastor Jamey Prickett of Liberty Hill United Methodist Church, A Dove’s Nest, Fastsigns of Canton, Women of Worship of True Life Ministries, survivor speakers Ali, Alicia, and Darlene, Ruby Bean, Lieutenant German Rivas of the Canton Police Department, and our keynote speaker, Judge Jackson Harris.  Special thanks go to the CFVC Interns that organized this year’s event: Brooke Larson, Kaytie Markfort, Lauren Drake and Rosie Rippe.

cfvc staff

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D.J. Elrod Candlelight Vigil

Posted by on Jul 10, 2013 in of Hope | 0 comments

There will be a candlelight vigil in remembrance of D.J. Elrod, a 2012 domestic violence homicide victim from our community, held tomorrow at the gazebo in downtown Canton.  We hope you will show your support to ending domestic violence through your attendance at this event, which will feature CFVC Executive Director,  Meg Rogers, as a speaker.

DJ Elrod


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