Candlelight vigil in Savanna

Around 150 persons attended a candlelight vigil Tuesday night, June 16, at Marquette Park in Savanna “for George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement to promote peace and unity and come together as a community to fight against racism,” according to a Facebook post by organizer Beth Smiley Phillips. Floyd was the African-American man who died a month ago while in the custody of Minneapolis, Minn., police, setting off weeks of protests throughout the United States and across the world. Savanna Police Chief Jeff Doran led the Pledge of Allegiance, Pastor Gary Panetta gave the opening prayer, and speakers included Savanna Mayor Chris Lain, State Rep. Tony McCombie, Pastor Panetta and WCHS Music Director Robert McFletcher Jones, who also provided music as did Evan Atherton. Those attending also held lighted candles for “nine minutes of silence in remembrance and solidarity.”