UK student, NAACP organizes BlackLivesMatter vigil in downtown Lexington

A poster made at BlackLivesMatter: Vigil for Alton Sterling and Philando Castile on Saturday, July 9. 

Saturday evening, UK students and part of the Lexington community gathered to bring awareness of the BlackLivesMatter movement to the city.

The vigil, called BlackLivesMatter: Vigil for Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, began at 8 p.m.

Speakers, some UK students and other Lexington residents, shared their views on the deaths of Alton Sterling, Philando Castile and Dallas police officers to a crowd in Triangle Park. A crowd of almost 100 lit candles and made posters in support of the victims at the vigil. 

Meghana Kudrimoti, a biology sophomore, organized the vigil with help from Lexington’s NAACP chapter. Kudrimoti was compelled to take action, rather than only comment about this week’s deaths on social media. 

“I’m not a professional vigil-maker, but I am someone who cares deeply about the Lexington community and making sure that people have a place and a time to come together and to realize that there is so many people who stand in solidarity and care,” Kudrimoti said.

Britteny Ester, a UK merchandising, apparel and textiles senior, attended Saturday’s event. 

“Its’s hard being a minority in America,” Ester said. “White privilege is real and it’s something that I think has definitely taken been taken for granted. And it was just nice to know that someone in my UK community was willing to step up and put this on.”

Earlier on Saturday, ForBlackUK held a healing circle on campus to provide emotional support to the campus community.