After Lori Bresnahan became the victim of one of the most shocking crimes in recent memory in Central New York, her family held a private memorial service. Now, three months after the attack that killed her, the family invited members of the community to celebrate Lori's life publicly at a vigil at Onondaga Lake Park in Liverpool. As set up was underway, ahead of the gathering, people in Onondaga Lake Park were taking notice.
"The family, I think if this can help them to know that people out there are supportive, maybe that will give them the strength to carry on," said Krystal Collette of Syracuse.
Msgr. James T. O'Brien, pastor of Pope John XXIII Roman Catholic Church in Liverpool, and Father Dennis Hayes, Chaplin of the Onondaga County Sheriff's Department, presided over a short service. The Liverpool Community Chorus, of which Bresnahan was a member, performed and members of the parish choir of St. John's Church also provided music.
S adness and tears consumed Onondaga Lake Park, as friends and even strangers came together for a candle light vigil to remember music loving librarian Lori Bresnahan.
It's been three months since we learned the details of the shocking crime. It was Marc 14 when police say Lori Bresnahan came out of the Great Northern Mall when she was attacked in a parking lot by David Renz. Renz then brought her and a 10-year-old girl to nearby Verplank Road where he stabbed Bresnahan to death.
Jayde Owlett graduated from high school with Lori, she was in tears while talking about that day she found out about her former classmate. "Unbelievable, how could a human being do that to another human being and it was just unbelievable," says Owlett.
Bridget Rath is part of the church choir Bresnahan was a part of. "I certainly think it's an evening for healing for most people who didn't have an opportunity to grieve in a group setting and I hope everyone can find comfort with tonight in the music and the prayers and just being together," says Rath.
Whether they came out to listen to come music or simply lean against a friend, everyone here is giving each other a big group hug.
"Giving the family comfort knowing that she was loved and we will never forget her," says Owlett.
One of those out at this Candlelight cigil who will never forget Lori was Bill Cregg. He was the first on the scene that awful night, first to call 911 and first to offer comfort to Lori Bresnahan as she was dying. Tonight he joined hundreds of others who are still healing.