8/27/13 - Vigil for Islan Nettles, Harlem NY
Some photos from the vigil held up in Harlem last Tuesday for Islan Nettles, the 21 year-old trans woman who was brutally beaten and died after 5 days on life support days earlier. It was an incredibly emotional and charged evening. Among the masses in attendance were: Laverne Cox, representatives from St. Phillip’s Church, Derek Labeija, Harlem Pride group, and Vaughn Taylor-Akutagawa, leader of Gay Men of African Descent.
While the event was filled with much tension due to a rapid fire of incorrect pronouns and disrupting shouts from livid crowd members, Laverne commented on the weight of that night quite eloquently:
"I know there are lots of people out there who are upset that she’s been called by the wrong pronoun. That hurts me, too. I stand here as a trans woman of color and my heart aches for this loss. I think that what the trans community needs to hear is that our lives matter."