May 4 commemoration focuses on positivity, not tragedy
DetailsCreated on Friday, 27 April 2012 02:13 Hits: 1615 This year’s May 4 commemoration will feature speakers who have strong ties to the May 4 tragedy.
Maia O’Meara and attorney Sanford Rosen will be the keynote speakers for this year’s commemoration.
Rosen was the attorney for the victims and families of the May 4 massacre. Rosen has worked on several U.S. Supreme Court cases. He also is a founding partner of the Rosen, Bien & Galvan law firm.
Maia O’Meara is a Kent Roosevelt student who is a member of Project Vietnam. The project raises money for the people of Vietnam.
Other speakers include Jon Schluepp with Warriors’ Journey Home, activist Howie Emmer, May 4 witnesses Laura Davis, Joe Louis and Joe Cullum.
Musicians Melanie Safka and Carlos Jones are scheduled to perform at the event.
Jessica Denton, the president of the May 4 task force, said the annual commemoration is in honor and memory of the victims.
“We try not to make it a negative event,” Denton said.
This year’s theme is “Don’t Give Up the Fight.”
The May 4 commemoration will be held at the Kent State commons. In case of rain, the commemoration will be held in the Ballroom. The event is open to the public.
On May 3 there will be a forum in the Kiva at 6 p.m. The panel of activists will include journalist Melba Pattillo Beals. Beals was one of “the Little Rock Nine,” the first black high school students to enroll in an all-white high school in Little Rock, Ark in 1957.
Kent State professor Mark Seeman will also speak at the forum, along with Rosen and Emmer.
There will be a candlelight march around campus from the Victory Bell to the site of the shootings. The march will start at 11 p.m., after the forum.
The 12-hour candlelight vigil will begin at midnight. The vigil will take place in the Prentice parking lot, which is where the four students were shot and killed by National Guardsmen.