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Remembering Ramarley

Kelsie Bonaparte Special to the AmNews | 4/16/2013, 4:34 p.m.
It has been almost three months since the tragic death of Ramarley Graham, but the...
NYPD kills again: Community outraged after police shoot unarmed man

It has been almost three months since the tragic death of Ramarley Graham, but the fight for justice still continues.

Graham's family has been working actively with the Bronx district attorney in the hopes that through the criminal investigation, something positive will come: an arrest and indictment.

Since Graham's death, another, similar tragedy has occurred and created a national outcry: the death of Trayvon Martin, another unarmed teen, killed by a neighborhood watch captain.

"Both of these cases are tragic, but we are not looking at this as a race. From our perspective, we would rather see justice done--meaning an indictment and a conviction--than for everything to be rushed," said attorney Royce Russell, who is representing the Graham family.

Aside from the legal aspects of the case, Graham's family will continue to hold vigils in his memory every Thursday through July 19. "This is really about celebrating Ramarley's life--we want everyone to know who he was." said Constance Malcolm, his mother.

On Mother's Day, the Graham family plans to hold a special vigil for mothers who have lost their children to police brutality. There is a special Father's Day vigil in the works as well.

At one of the rallies was a voter registration table for people to help make change.

"Not necessarily for the bigger elections, even though those are vital, but for the elections [that are less well publicized]--we need our folks to come out, because those are the ones that are directly affecting our communities. If we can change the middle ground, we can change the higher ground," said Russell.

A website has been created in remembrance of Graham, www.ramarleyscall.org, for updates on Graham's case.

"We have a petition on the site for the arrest of officer Richard Haste, and we hope that the website can eventually provide a component of social and legal services to help families who have been through tragic situations and suffered get back on their feet," Malcolm and Russell told the Amsterdam News.

"It has been very hard, but we are taking it one day at a time. There are days when it's OK and days when I don't know what I'm going to feel. We try to cope the best we can. His birthday just passed, and Mother's Day is coming--it's hard," said Malcolm.

Graham would have turned 19 on April 12.