‘They deserve to be remembered’: Vigil held to honor homeless people who died in past year

Forty-nine people were remembered at a candlelight vigil on Thursday night.
A vigil was held Thursday night to remember the lives of homeless people who died in the past year.
Published: Nov. 17, 2023 at 6:48 AM EST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - In honoring those of Mecklenburg County’s homeless population who have died in the past year, a memorial candlelight vigil was held Thursday night in uptown Charlotte.

A total of 49 names were read.

”This can be the only recognition event to mark their lives and passing,” Michael O’Sullivan with Homeless Services Network of Charlotte-Mecklenburg said. “They deserve to be remembered.”

The network features more than 20 partners, all working to help homeless neighbors.

”These are people. They have friends, loved ones,” O’Sullivan said. “They may be homeless for things that have nothing to do with them. Stuff happens in life.”

By sharing memories, the night was about honoring their lives and never forgetting.

“They were not homeless. They had a home. Their home was here...their home was Charlotte,” Pastor Charles DiRico of Word on the Street said. “Their home was Mecklenburg County and we we’re reminded of that tonight. They were loved and they did love us while they were here.”

According to county numbers, there are 3,162 people experiencing homelessness.

November is also Homeless Awareness Month.

Related: Mecklenburg County creates outreach team to help homeless

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