This week in Oregon, USA a child was tragically murdered by his mother.
A group of mothers, headed up by Lorraine Ball, from the online community known as Portland Autism Moms have organized a candlelight vigil this Saturday November 8 in Portland, Oregon to rememeber this child. His name is London McCabe. Although we did not know this boy or his family personally we have all felt impacted by this tragedy.
At the end of the formal part of the vigil around 7:00pm, there will be a balloon release. If you live locally you are invited to join us for a 6:15pm start. There will also be an online vigil. Or you may choose to, in your own personal way, honor the life of this little boy.
The words written by me below are to be read out tonight by Lorraine during the vigil. After this I will be reading a prayer I wrote for the vigil. I hope to post a copy of the words of this prayer at some point soon.
A Candlelight Vigil for London:
Thankyou all for coming to this candlelight vigil which is being held to honor and remember the life of six year old London McCabe.
We would like to welcome all of you who are here as part of our diverse autism community; friends, parents, and children, and the many more who have come out to remember London. Thank you all so much for coming.
This vigil for us is about a number of things.
We want to show our support to the family and friends of London McCabe. Our deepest sympathies are with them. Our love, thoughts and prayers are with them in their time of such unimaginable loss and heartbreak.
We also have taken this time to honor the life of London. We have very deliberately chosen to not focus tonight on the tragic circumstances of the death of this little boy. This vigil is about his life. We understand there are more conversations to be had, but we would ask that these be put aside for tonight.
Tonight we ask that you would focus your energies on remembering the light that was London’s life, his big smile, and his sweet spirit. Many among us have chosen to wear hats in his honor because he loved wearing them so much.
We also have with us candles which will be lit in his memory, and then at 7:00pm we will be blowing bubbles and releasing balloons. Six white balloons will released as a symbol of London’s innocence.
Tonight, in the hearts of people all over Portland, vigils are being held. We are also thinking of the Newport community who are holding a vigil and will be releasing their balloons at the same time as us.
We also acknowledge those who are unable to attend in person but are part of an online vigil.
We are also very mindful that we are part of a much larger autism community, who right now across the globe are taking the time to remember London tonight.
We stand together as mothers, fathers, children, families and people united in our desire to celebrate and honor the life of one little boy. He has touched the hearts of so many of us here. For so many of us he reminds us of our own children.
While are hearts are heavy with grief, our hearts are also hopeful that our autism community would shine with a light that only gets brighter. Both locally and globally our hope is that the autism community would be a place where we can all draw strength and security from each other.
We stand up for our children. We stand up for our children with autism and we stand up for the autistic adults who live, work, love, and contribute so much talent, joy and uniqueness to the world. Our message to society at large is a simple one.
Our children’s lives matter.
Autistic lives matter.
London McCabe’s life matter’s to us.
We stand as a community, strong in love, for London tonight.
Rest In Peace London.