Murder victims were remembered Wednesday exactly one year after their deaths. Family and friends released balloons at the grave of one of the victims in an unsolved crime.
Even though it was specifically for one woman, there were two victims. A family dressed all in yellow held yellow balloons at Westlawn Cemetery and lit a candle for the one they lost.
“This is another tragedy of someone who was an innocent bystander of a heinous crime,” said Buffy Ray Bush, whose sister Jamelia Hesseltine was killed September 12, 2011. The family stood at her grave as they remembered her and how she lost her life.
“That would be the one thing that I could actually say honestly, that my sister knew how to do heartfelt, could feed a whole family and could feed some more, even if she was completely broke, she'd still make it happen,” said the victim’s brother, Ernest Kain.
Hesseltine's children found her and her boyfriend, Carl Reed, dead in their bed. She was 28 and he was 29. “Her life was about providing for them and helping everybody else when she could and that was the way she led her life and the way that she lost her life is beyond tragic, almost beyond words right now,” said Jamelia’s brother, Racine Porter Jr.
Even though it has been a year, for this family the pain hasn't lessened. “We haven't heard anything as far as who, suspects, nothing, we know nothing to this day, a year later and it's sad because you see on the news every day somebody else is being murdered, somebody else’s family is having to go through what my family is going through."
As they released balloons at her grave, family members hope it sends a message to their loved one and to the community that they haven't forgotten and will continue fighting for justice.