Vigil honors Clanton Middle student

Jessica Brookshire, founder of Kids Against Ridicule Meanness and Aggression, spoke at a vigil for 12-year-old Clanton Middle School student Dajia Lee on Thursday at Goose Pond Park. Lee died of suicide on Oct. 4.

Organizers estimated more than 400 people attended a vigil Thursday night in honor of Dajia Lee, a 12-year-old Clanton Middle School student who died of suicide on Oct. 4.

“Look around, this is the impact she had,” said Roman Lee, Dajia’s cousin.

Roman Lee then read a book Dajia had written in school. In the book, Dajia writes about her brothers, pets and softball—and her ambitions.

Deedee Jenkins, left, cousin of Dajia Lee, helps Tomoya Tagger and Jadin Lykes light candles in honor of Lee.

“When I grow up, I want to be a doctor,” she writes. “I want to take care of babies. Babies need to be taken care of.”

“I’m taking a vow not to let Daija die in vain,” Roman Lee said.

Jessica Brookshire of Kids Against Ridicule Meanness and Aggression was the featured speaker. Brookshire talked about learning about Dajia through spending time with her family.

“She was a little girl you just couldn’t help but love,” Brookshire said. “Dajia was the kind of person who spreads kindness in this world. If you truly want to commemorate Dajia, spread some love and some kindness.”

Brookshire addressed the many children in attendance and stressed that don’t have to keep their emotional pain inside.

“You can talk to somebody,” she said.

Local musician Steve Roberson performed and emceed the event.

The service concluded with Lanie Mason, a senior at Thorsby, singing “Amazing Grace,” which the crowd soon took up themselves.

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