For the City Times
WISCONSIN RAPIDS – A 63-year-old mother and her 25-year-old daughter, killed by the daughter’s ex-boyfriend in Brown County, a 3-month-old Milwaukee boy, killed by his father – and a 29-year-old La Crosse woman killed by her 35-year-old husband.
These victims, along with the more than 55 other Wisconsin residents who died in 2016 due to domestic violence, will be remembered during the second annual “Remember My Name” event, hosted by The Family Center. The event, along with a month-long display at McMillan Memorial Library, is part of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
The vigil, open to the public, is from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5 at First Congregational Church United Church of Christ, 311 Second St. S. Those attending should enter via the Second Street or Maple Street doors.
The event is geared to bring awareness to domestic violence, remember those who died, and recognize community members who support work of The Family Center.
On Oct. 1, End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin will release its 2016 Wisconsin Domestic Violence Homicide Report, which lists the victims, who come from 23 counties, including Wood and Marathon counties. Victims ranged in age from 3 months old to 71 years old. The 2016 report, along with reports since 2000, will be available at www.endabusewi.org. The report also is available in other languages, including Hmong and Spanish.
In 2016, The Family Center provided 4,735 nights in shelter to 51 adults and 61 children in crisis due to domestic violence. As a nonprofit organization, The Family Center provides all services at no cost to the victims, including victims not in shelter.
“While we are deeply saddened by the number of lives lost to domestic violence in Wisconsin in 2016, we are grateful for the lives saved through the safety provided by Family Center’s 24 hour crisis intervention services,” said Sue Sippel, executive director of The Family Center. “Help is available around the clock, 365 days/year.”
During the vigil, Family Center staff will read the names of victims, as participants drop flowers into the river in their memory, weather permitting.
Family Center staff will present the community awards, which will include “Above & Beyond For Business,” “Community Treasure,” “Law Enforcement Officer of The Year,” “Community Champion,” and “Board Member of the Year.”
Light refreshments inside the church will follow the river ceremony. The event is free and open to the public.
Call The Family Center at 715-421-1559 for more information.