DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Families gathered Monday night to remember Montgomery County’s homicide victims after a difficult year for the Dayton area.
The Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office hosts a vigil for homicide victims each year to bring comfort to victims’ families during the holiday season.
So far in 2019, 67 people have been killed in homicides in Montgomery County, an increase of 11 compared to 2018, according to Prosecutor Mat Heck, Jr.
Fallen Dayton police Detective Jorge Del Rio and the nine victims of the Oregon District mass shooting were among the 67 people remembered during Monday’s service.
“It means a lot but it hurts, too, at the same time because, for everybody here, these are all people honoring their families in a tragic way with no closure,” said Dion Green, who lost his father Derrick Fudge in the Oregon District August 4.
This year, the holiday season has been different for his family, he said.
“It’s just been real stagnant, just not the same, the energy’s not there like it used to be,” Green said.
Heck said he believes the annual service is especially important this year after the tragedies Montgomery County has faced.
“You look at that and you see the needless violence that occurs in our neighborhoods, on our streets, and I just think people, it’s really affected them this year,” Heck said.
Green told 2 NEWS he is grateful his father and the county’s other homicide victims have not been forgotten.
“I just want them all to be remembered,” Green said. “They all meant something to everybody in here.”