Vigil held by Parents of Murdered Children
UPPER CHICHESTER>> Sept. 25 is a special day for families coping with the murder of a child.
Declared National Day of Remembrance for Murder Victims back in 2007, it’s a day where members of the national group Parents of Murdered Children hold annual vigils to remember the loss of a child from toddlers to adults.
The Delaware County chapter held their annual memorial observance at their Living Memorial Gardens in Upper Chichester Sunday evening, celebrating both the lives violently taken from their parents and the chapter’s 15th anniversary of the gardens’ opening.
“The grief is still there, and never goes away,” said POMC Chapter Leader Jane McPhee, whose stepdaughter was murdered back in 2001. “but we do have their memories to keep us going. Thank goodness for pictures, articles and any personal items we have been able to preserve over the years to remind us of them.”
The memories are seen on over 50 individual gardens, or plots, on the 3.5 acres of desolate wooden solace, each distinctly reserved by a bench with the lost one’s name. Pictures, sports memorabilia, trinkets and other notables are placed about on the gardens by family members who have agreed to take care of their loved one’s space.
Brookhaven resident Dorothy Green has had a garden in her son’s name, Jonathan, since his murder in March 2014 at the age of 37.
This was the first year she attended a vigil for POMC.
State Rep. Stephen Barrar, R-160, of Upper Chichester, speaks to family members at Sunday evening’s vigil.
The lawn fixture at this garden asks people to treasure the memories. Family members decorate gardens with photos, signs and other effects to help them remembered their lost loved ones.