Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

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Israel-Hamas War Victims Honored at Vigil

The+vigil+was+held+at+the+Memorial+Student+Center+Plaza.
Matthew Schaffer
The vigil was held at the Memorial Student Center Plaza.

A candlelight vigil to memorialize those who have died in the Israel-Hamas war saw community and religious leaders gather on Wednesday, Nov. 17, at the Memorial Student Center Plaza.

The event was hosted to promote peace and healing as tensions have risen on campuses nationwide since the attacks on Israel on Oct. 7, 

with AP reporting 9,770 Palestinian deaths and 1,400 Israeli deaths since the initial attack.

“We have continually watched horrific videos of men, women, disabled, elderly, children and babies being killed, broken, burned and abandoned,” Sasha Chapman, Marshall alum and event organizer, said during her speech. “I make myself watch these videos, and when I do, I see my son. What if it were him that was broken and cannot find me?”

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Chapman was inspired to organize the vigil because she couldn’t help but see her own child in online videos as well as her Arabic friends and coworkers who felt afraid to speak up.

“Our Jewish and Arabic community members deserve to not experience guilt from the feeling of mourning and fear,” Chapman said. “We must be able to feel the pain in one community without denying it in another.”

She said that, despite her fears of public speaking, this calling to speak out was too powerful to stand by idly.

“I never spoke up about things throughout my life because I didn’t feel educated enough. I was too ignorant to what is going on; I was too insecure, and the fact of the matter is that we can all carry compassion, and we can all be empathetic,” Chapman said. “We can all speak to that and let each other know that they are seen and not forgotten.”

Chapman was joined by pastor Lamario Bradwell, reverend Chris Bailey and rabbi Robert D. Judd who led prayers for peace and empathy with community members in attendance as candles were lit and a moment of silence was held for the victims of the ongoing war.

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