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Candlelight Vigil Planned to Honor Shooting Victims

Oct 03, 2017 12:32PM ● By Jeanne Fratello

Photo via Morguefile

Editor's note: This story has been update to reflect the fact that MBUSD school board will attend the vigil, and the school board meeting has been moved to "no earlier than" 7:30 p.m.

A candlelight vigil will be held at the Manhattan Beach Pier on Wednesday, October 4 at 6:30 p.m. to honor those lost and comfort those affected by the shooting massacre in Las Vegas. The tragedy hit close to home for many in Manhattan Beach: Sandy Casey, a Manhattan Beach Middle School teacher and Rachael Parker, a Manhattan Beach Police Department records technician, were among those killed in the shooting.

The vigil is being organized by local activist group South Bay Cares. "One of our committee leaders, Tara Crimin, contacted Kamala [Horwitz] and I last night and we all knew we had to quickly plan something to gather as South Bay Cares, as well as a community," said Courtney Lingle, who along with Horwitz co-founded the group.

Lingle continued: "This hit us all with losing a MBUSD teacher that many of our children knew, losing a member of our police department and having friends and family there who had to face the most horrific situation. We are helpless on what to say or do, but what we know we can give to them is love and support."

Although the Manhattan Beach Unified School District school board meeting was originally scheduled to meet at 6:30 p.m., the board has since announced that members will attend the vigil, and the board meeting will begin "no earlier than" 7:30 p.m.

"We want to let all affected know that we as a community are here and let everyone involved out of the South Bay Area know, that our hearts are truly with them," said Lingle. "Kamala and I co-founded South Bay Cares to advocate for human, environmental and constitutional rights through community action. This is what we are about."

Meanwhile, as tributes continued to pour in for Casey and Parker, various memorials were being organized. At the moment, a GoFundMe account has been started for funeral expenses for Sandy Casey, and a makeshift memorial has been set up at the Manhattan Beach Police Department honoring Parker.

For those looking for additional ways to give, there will be a blood drive going on this weekend outside the Manhattan Beach Fire Department at the Manhattan Beach Hometown Fair.
(Note that if you donated blood during the Hurricane Harvey blood drive, you will not be eligible to give blood at this event.)

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