Misty Holt-Singh Candlelight Vigil in Stockton

July 20, 2014

I participated in Saturday night’s candlelight vigil for Misty Holt-Singh at the University Plaza Hotel in downtown Stockton.

Misty was taken hostage and killed during the bank robbery and car chase that took place on Wednesday the 16th.Several hundred people attended the vigil, which was conducted with dignity and respect. Mayor Anthony Silva spoke and prayers were offered by five local ministers followed by silence and candle-lighting.

I wish I had met Misty. She was clearly loved and will be missed by everyone that knew her. During the vigil there were no words of anger, but words of loss and of thanks for the depth of support shown by the community. The mourners were as diverse as our city, people coming together to find support and solace with our community.

Misty’s family filled the platform as candles were raised in her honor and memory.

Everyone at the ceremony had the feeling that Stockton can and must do better. While this violence is shocking and its solutions appear complex, the answers start with our community. While we won’t hesitate to punish those who are violent criminals, we must also offer something better to these potential perpetrators before violence begins.

Stockton is a city with a shared sense of community and a deep heart. It is time for us all to find a way to stop this senseless and destructive violence, and make something good come from this tragedy.