Rock Fence Park was a little brighter than usual Friday night as 10 community members somberly held candles and remembered the victims of a horrific school shooting that took place just a week earlier.
The vigil was organized by East Jessamine High School student Brittany Blair, who felt moved to do something — anything — after learning about the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., that took the lives of 20 first-graders and six adults Dec. 14.
“When you feel hopeless, you do what you can do, and she just felt like, ‘How can I help them?’” said Blair’s mother, Kathy Henson. “This is something she could do; she provided the platform.”
Those who braved the sub-freezing temperatures stood around a banner with candles in the shape of a heart as they prayed, listened to a poem and urged each other to remember the victims and be mindful of the effects on communities like Nicholasville.
Blair said she wasn’t concerned about the number of those who attended but about remembrance.
“I think it was a success; I don’t really care how many people came or who didn’t; I just think this was a huge success,” she said.
The county also observed a memorial service at the courthouse at 9:30 a.m. Friday — exactly a week after the shooting. About 35 people attended that service, during which judge-executive Neal Cassity rang the courthouse bell 26 times as county attorney Brian Goettl read the names of the victims.