MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - For more than a decade, people have gathered at The Market Common to honor and remember the hundreds of people in the transgender community that were killed in acts of violence.
The Human Rights Campaign says in 2018, 26 members of the transgender community in the United States died because of violence, the majority of whom were black transgender women.
So far in 2019, 22 people have died within the transgender community in America, with two of those deaths happening in South Carolina.
“They were killed within two weeks of each other. One was in North Charleston and one was in Allendale,” said Veronica Walters, the president of T-Time Transgender Support Inc.
The names of these two people, along with the names of 370 transgender people that were killed across the world within the past year, were read during the Transgender Day of Remembrance ceremony Sunday night.
“We can unite together as one community and we can say ‘enough is enough’ and we can help educate others,” said Myrtle Beach Mayor Brenda Bethune.
The event brought together people from many different walks of life, including the reverend of a Surfside Beach church, who apologized for her entire generation’s misunderstanding of the LGBTQ community.
“I can say to you genuinely, from me and to all of those whom I’m connected, I’m sorry. Please forgive me, thank you, I love you. How wonderful we are a species that keeps evolving. I have great hope, I said in my service today there’s more good in the world than non-good,” Reverend Margaret Hiller of Unity Church said.
Those who filled the room hope through education and respect, the number of deaths will one day be zero.
“We do live in a world that seems to hate those things that we don’t understand and to get past that, it just takes a little bit of learning,” one person in attendance said.
If you or someone you know have any questions about the event or the organizations available in the area, you can click on the links below: