"Although Heather was a caring, compassionate, person, so are a lot of you. A lot of you go that extra mile. And I think the reason that what happened to Heather has struck a chord is because we know that what she did was achievable," Susan Bro, told over a thousand of Charlottesville, VA community and mourners at the memorial service of her daughter, Heather Heyer on August 16, 2017.
Heather Heyer, 32, of Charlottesville, was killed on Aug. 12, 2017 in Charlottesville when a car driven by an alleged white supremacist and KKK member rammed into a crowd of counter-protesters at a white supremacists and KKK rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.
The mourners gave a standing ovation when Susan Bro said, referring to the murderers, "They tried to kill my child to shut her up -- well, guess what -- you just magnified her."
The grieving mother also tried to raise the conscience of the community and the mourners, and encouraged them to take a stand and fight for what is right: "Find what's wrong, don't ignore it, don't look the other way ... Say to yourself, 'What can I do to make a difference?' And that's how you're going to make my child's death worthwhile. I'd rather have my child, but by golly, if I have to give her up, we're going to make it count. I want this to spread, I don't want this to die ...This is just the beginning of Heather's legacy."
Heather Heyer's grandfather, Elwood Shrader, said at the service, that Heather showed her passion at an early age, excited about school, a good story teller and always ready to call out something that didn't seem right to her, but also willing to understand divergent views.
Shrader concluded that Heyer, who worked as a paralegal, had a passion and desire for justice throughout her life.
Heyer's father, Mark Heyer, in an emotional speech, paid tribute to his daughter saying, "No father should have to do this... She wanted equality and in this issue of the day of her passing, she wanted to put down hate. And for my part, we just need to stop all this stuff and just forgive each other... She realized we all need forgiveness and we all must extend forgiveness. As we think about her today, we're very proud of her."
Shrader also expressed his appreciation for the community's support.
The community's sentiment couldn't be better summarized than in the tribute by Heather Heyer's cousin, Diana Ratcliff, when she read a letter at the service that she said she wished to have shared with Heather: "Did I ever tell you how much I loved you? Heather, when my children ask me who I admire most I will tell them you. My baby cousin, who is larger than life and too good for this world. You will always be in our hearts".
Along with Heather Heyer, Charlotte, VA community and the nation also remembered the 2 Virginia state troopers who heroically died in a chopper crash, on their way to stop the violence by white supremacists and KKK, against counter protesters.