On what would have been Trayvon Martin’s 23rd birthday, a local group holds remembrance

Over top a busy Norfolk thoroughfare on Monday night, a local group illuminated a message of remembrance on what would have been Trayvon Martin's 23rd birthday.

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Over top a busy Norfolk thoroughfare, a local group illuminated a message of remembrance on what would have been Trayvon Martin’s 23rd birthday.

Martin was shot and killed in Sanford, Florida, back in 2012 by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman.

The fatal shooting of the 17-year-old, and Zimmerman’s eventual acquittal, sparked national outrage and spurred the Black Lives Matter movement. 

On Monday night, the Hampton Roads Light Brigade spelled out “#RIP Trayvon” in blue lights over the I-264 footbridge near Norfolk State University.

Michelle Diamond, who organized tonight’s event said it’s important to remind people why he died.

“It’s important for people to talk about racism — and why a young man was walking in a predominantly white neighborhood and ended up dead with a bag of candy.”

Diamond says the group picked the I-264 footbridge because of the amount of traffic that goes by.

She says the more people that see the message, the more they will discuss Martin and cultural issues facing the country.

The Hampton Roads Light Brigade is a chapter of the Overpass Light Brigade, which has similar groups across the United States and around the world. The syndicate is known for promoting grassroots and progressive views, such as those shared by the Occupy Wall Street and Black Lives Matter movements.