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The crowd gathers in Risman Plaza on Friday, June 5 to remember the life of Breonna Taylor. 

Around 100 community members gathered in Risman Plasma Friday evening to celebrate the life of Breonna Taylor on her 27th birthday. Circled around a table with a photo of Taylor and balloons, they held candles to commemorate her life. 

Taylor was a victim of police brutality in Louisville, Kentucky on March 13. Police entered her home on a no-knock search warrant, and she was shot eight times. 

Taylor’s death was overshadowed, as it happened just before the COVID-19 pandemic began to rise. Jada Boggan, sophomore fashion merchandising major and president of The Reach Out at Kent State, wanted to ensure that her life was not forgotten.

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A photo of Breonna Taylor, surrounded by candles at her vigil hosted by The Reach Out on Friday, June 5. 

“We wanted to do something special for her because she didn't get the recognition she deserved,” Boggan said. 

The Reach Out is a community service and civil engagement-focused organization. Boggan said the group is a predominantly black organization, and in the wake of the many uprisings related to the Black Lives Matter movement, she wanted to do something to remember the life of someone who was affected by this. 

“The change is happening because we are coming together,” Boggan said. “When that happens, there’s no way that you can separate us. There’s definitely power in numbers for sure.” 

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Jada Boggan, president of Kent State's The Reach Out, addresses the crowd before the vigil. 

After Boggan addressed the crowd and thanked them for coming out, she invited multiple members of the Kent community to speak on the issue, including Undergraduate Student Government [USG] president Tiera Moore. 

“As a black woman, I know what it’s like to be overlooked,” Moore said. “That’s why I am so honored to join you guys in commemorating the life of Breonna Taylor.”

Contact Kelsey Paulus at kpaulus4@kent.edu.

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