A Personal Note

Wreath hung at the closed St. Andrews Regional Library, June 19, 2015

Wreath hung at the St. Andrews Regional Library, June 19, 2015

Just wanted to take a moment to note that recently I have been working on some writing to share with you here again. I was in the process of writing a new post about books when everything in my city took a different turn.

You might know that I live in Charleston, SC and that I work at the Charleston County Public Library. Two weeks ago one of my colleagues at CCPL, Cynthia Hurd, was killed along with eight other members of her Bible study group at the Emanuel AME Church about a block from my workplace.

While I did not know Cynthia well, many people I am close to at work did. I just have not been able to bring myself to write about books, or Doctor Who, or anything else fun when the surreal and unbelievable present has taken over everyone’s thoughts here in Charleston.

I have many thoughts and feelings about what has happened, but at this time it doesn’t feel right to share them here. This time is about the families and the congregation of the church called Mother Emanuel. In the last couple of weeks, it feels like the entire world has turned its attention to this church and to its amazing congregation.

It is my fervent hope that the story of the Emanuel 9 and their church family brings people to the table to talk about racism in this country. I hope that we can all come together, set aside our differences, and do the hard work to make the world a more peaceful and loving place. This painful time calls us to examine our lives, our assumptions, our unearned advantages, and our blind spots in an effort to increase the level of understanding and justice in the world. Please join with me in remembering the Nine. Let’s learn their stories, and learn the history of Emanuel AME. Let’s reach out to each other with mutual understanding and make the world a better place in memory of them.

Cynthia Hurd

Daniel L. Simmons Sr.

Depayne Middleton-Doctor

Ethel Lance

Sharonda Coleman-Singleton

Tywanza Sanders

The Reverend Clementa Pinckney

Myra Thompson

Susie Jackson


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