In remembrance of three young Muslims shot near the University of North Carolina, the Muslim Student Association (MSA) at Raritan Valley Community College will hold a candlelight vigil on Tuesday, Feb. 24, 1:00-2:20 p.m. in the college’s Atrium.
The scheduled speakers are RVCC President Michael McDonough; Richeleen Dashield, Dean of Multicultural Affairs; Kiswah Khan, MSA Advisor; Keilani Abdullah, Sociology Professor at RVCC; Hadir Elfarra, MSA President; Maria Abbas, MSA Vice President; Moustafa Ramadan, MSA Student Government Association (SGA) Representative; and Ahmed Eldiesyawe, MSA SGA Representative.
A slideshow and a table holding pictures, flowers and candles will be displayed to remember the victims. MSA will also lead a prayer and display a poster board that attendees can sign to show support for the victims. MSA will send the signed poster board to the victims’ families.
This is the first Muslim candlelight vigil held at RVCC. “Many of the large Universities have held candlelight vigils—Kean, NJIT, Rutgers New Brunswick and Newark—but none of the small community colleges,” said MSA President Hadir Elfarra. “I thought, since MSA has been established last semester, it would be an excellent idea to do this to remember these three beautiful innocent souls—and to educate the community (about the incident).”
“Islam is a peaceful religion. This killing is caused by hatred,” said MSA Advisor Kiswah Khan.
Elfarra pointed out that in an interview on MSNBC, the father of one of the victims said he does not want revenge from this hate crime; he just wants things to be better for the Muslim Community. Hashtags supporting the victims include “#ourthreewinners” and “#chapelhillshooting.”
Featured image caption: Victims of the shooting near the University of North Carolina: Deah Shaddy Barakat (Left), 23; Yusor Mohammad (center), 21; Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha (right), 19.