Local Vigil Supporting Cindy Sheehan

By: Elizabeth Donatelli
By: Elizabeth Donatelli

August 17, 2005

A crowd gathered in Charlottesville to show their support for a woman halfway across the country.

Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a fallen soldier, continues to protest outside President Bush's Texas ranch. People as far and wide as Iowa and Washington DC to right here in Charlottesville are joining her vigil.

As Sheehan remains outside the ranch hoping to speak with him--over 100 people in Charlottesville came out to support her.

"I would say 150 [people are here]. Many more than I expected to come, and I'm sure that each person here represents 50 people who feel this way, but aren't demonstrators," said organizer Asha Greer.

"I think what she's doing is important and I think the anti-war movement is picking up," said Charlottesville resident Anoop Ranganath who was at the vigil.

People gathered at the corner of Preston Avenue and Ridge Street holding candles and singing songs.

"Singing is good. You have to put your heart in it when you're singing, so people are getting their hearts turned on," Greer said.

People of all ages came for hours to show their support--not just for Sheehan, but also against the war.

"You don't send troops to war without a plan. There are American troops, there are American boys and girls going out there who are dying for no good cause," said Rory Brennan who attended the vigil.

"We're definitely here supporting the troops and we're definitely here supporting our patriotism. [There are] many ways to show your patriotism and it's generally not a flag on the back of the car," said vigil participant Todd Radenbaugh.

Charlottesville isn't the only city participating. Liberal organizations like Moveon.org are sponsoring events like this throughout the country. Their website shows that over 50,000 people have signed up to attend more than 1600 vigils. Other liberal groups like True Majority are also sponsoring events.

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