Delivering a poignant and forceful eulogy at the funeral for her daughter, Heather Heyer, who was slain Saturday during the protest against white nationalists in Charlottesville, Virginia, her mother, Susan Bro, said her daughter’s death must not be in vain.
Let’s Remember Heather Heyer As A Hero
Heyer died when a Hitler-obsessed white supremacist sped his car through a crowd of protesters who were demonstrating against the neo-Nazi rally, the Telegraph reports.
“They tried to kill my child to shut her up,” Bro told the crowd. “Well guess what? You just magnified her.”
Bro said she poured through pages of worldwide coverage about the protests and people’s disgust at President Donald Trump for equating white nationalists with those who protested against them.
“I want this to spread. I don’t want this to die. This is just the beginning of Heather’s legacy.”
“You have to find in your heart that spark of accountability. I don’t want you to turn away. You poke that finger at yourself and you make it happen. You take that extra step. You find a way to make a difference in the world.”
Huge crowds of people attended the tribute at the Paramount Theater in Charlottesville, and fortunately there were no white supremacists waiting to greet them at the door. Some had said they intended to protest at Heyer’s memorial service, but apparently they had second thoughts.
There was, however, a small group of pink-helmeted anti-white supremacist protesters carrying baseball bats and purple shields to discourage any racists who might have been bold enough to show up. One member of the group, who didn’t want to be identified, said they brought the weapons in case they needed them, adding:
“The cops didn’t protect us on Saturday and we don’t trust them to do so today.”
Heyer’s grandfather, Elwood Shrader, and her father, Mark Heyer, also spoke. Shrader noted the young woman had a strong belief in justice, and her dad told the audience he was proud of her.
Burying a child is something no father should have to do, he said, his eyes filling with tears, and added:
“But I love my daughter. Just love each other.”
Heyer’s mother thanked Trump for condemning the violence Monday, but she hasn’t commented after he reversed his statement Tuesday. Even so, the family asked that memorial speakers not politicize her daughter’s eulogy.
It isn’t known if Trump contacted the bereaved family.
But Bro added:
“If you are not outraged, you are not paying attention. Make a point to look at it. That’s how you make her death worthwhile.”
“I’d rather have my child, but if I can’t have her, by golly, we’re going to make it count.”
Surprisingly, Trump did do something rather uncharacteristic of him. Yes, he took to Twitter, but this time it wasn’t a meltdown.
Memorial service today for beautiful and incredible Heather Heyer, a truly special young woman. She will be long remembered by all!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 16, 2017
But Trump’s earlier assertion that both sides “bear the blame” is still stirring up emotions nationwide, notes The Associated Press, and many cities are racing to remove Confederate symbols and statues.
The neo-Nazis and their dear friend Trump bear the blame for this, not the counter-protesters who were at the rally protecting the rights of others. Do you really think these white nationalists care if they are the ones to blame? It’s quite clear they went to Charlottesville to create trouble and unrest.
And they succeeded. The protesters fought fire with fire, and that’s what makes people like Susan Heyer, so cruelly killed for no good reason whatsoever, heroes. As progressives, we are becoming angrier at those who would oppress us.
And we will prevail.
In the video below, you can watch this mother pay tribute to her daughter.
Featured image courtesy of Eric Dolan.