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New Orleans residents hold daily silent vigil and take a knee for George Floyd

(Andee Rudloff)
Published: Jun. 21, 2020 at 3:27 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - If you drive down S. Carrollton past Oak street at 6 p.m., you’ll see families and neighbors kneeling together on the neutral ground. Signs resonate with sentiments from recent protests, reading “I can’t breathe” and “Black Lives Matter.”

Residents of the neighborhood gather every night in silent vigil to remember the almost nine minutes Officer Chauvin knelt on George Floyd’s neck.

Similar small kneel-downs have started in Abita Springs and beyond the state of Louisiana but it began in a small Gentilly neighborhood.

Colette Delacroix, along with her neighbors, wanted to participate in recent area protests for George Floyd and other victims of police violence but Coronavirus is still a serious threat to her neighborhood.

Many of her neighbors are especially susceptible to exposure because of previous health conditions.

Delacroix wanted to protect her community but participate in the conversation.

“People started going to protests, I was trying to figure out what to do. We are now in the time of Covid-19 and I’m surrounded by neighbors who can’t do that. We can’t go to protests. So I decided the thing to do is to just go out on my front lawn and take a knee,‘” Gentilly native Colette Delacroix said.

She sent out an email in mass to friends, neighbors, and even family out-of-state with one mission: go outside and kneel down on your lawn for Floyd.

Residents like Joyce and Dave Thomas took Delacroix’s message and brought it to other parts of New Orleans.

“This is a quiet action, there’s no question about it,” said Joyce. “But hopefully it’s a precursor.”

Subsequently, neighbors quietly gather on Delacroix’s lawn and across the city every night. Those that are able, kneel, while others sit in wheelchairs or with walkers.

And each night at 6 P.M. they all silently reflect together.

“If I starts a conversation, then that’s what needs to happen,” said Delacroix. “And that’s why we’re out here every night.”

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