‘Loss is such a great pain’: Lake City community holds vigil for Mexico kidnapping victims

Published: Mar. 8, 2023 at 11:14 PM EST|Updated: Mar. 8, 2023 at 11:17 PM EST
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LAKE CITY, S.C. (WMBF) - The community of Lake City came together to hold a vigil for the victims of the kidnapping in Mexico.

“I can actually stand here today and say I know the feeling because we have also been through something tragic like this a few years ago,” said Pastor Herbert Godwin of Word of God Outreach Ministries.

Lake City Mayor Yamekia Robinson released a statement on Wednesday stating that Shaheed Woodard and Zindell Brown, both from Lake City, died during the terrifying incident.

“We are all saddened and have heavy hearts for them and their families. We send our deepest sympathy out to each family,” Robinson said.

At the vigil, a prayer for strength for the families involved.

“Some don’t really know god what to say but Father we pray in the name of Jesus that you will go throughout this community and this family and gather in their hearts lord and hold them in the palm of your hand,” said John Singletary, minister.

Mayia Godwin was a friend of Zindell Brown and recalls growing up with him in Lake City.

“He was kind, he was funny every time I would talk to him he would have something funny to say. (He) Always had something positive to say,” said Godwin.

For Pastor Herbert Godwin, this was personal.

“It’s more of a sense of love for our community, I know the families of these people very well. As a matter of fact, I grew up with some of them and I know these children. I have children of my own that are basically the same age,” said Herbert Godwin.

A clear message was sent to the world tonight, there is no need for negative comments on social media.

“There is a lot of hurt going on right now. There is a lot of backbiting going on right now. There are a lot of people putting out things that might not necessarily be true but we are a praying people,” said Frank Brenton, Lake City Resident.

For the families of the victims a message of support and love.

“We do understand that loss is such a great pain and at this time we want to show them comfort and show them support,” said Singletary.

There were no members of any of the victims’ immediate families in attendance tonight--with some friends of Zindell Brown just too distraught to talk to us.

It’s unclear at this point if any services for Brown and Woodard will be held in the future.