Vigil Held in Memory of Levi Southerly
A candlelit vigil was held on Thursday, September 19, in order to honor Levi Southerly. Levi, a 16 year old sophomore at Tyler Consolidated High School, took his own life as an effect of bullying.
Several of Levi’s family and friends gathered around a memorial at Sistersville Park. Just as dusk approached, candles were lit as a memorium for Southerly.
Support poured in from the community, as well as from other schools throughout the state.
Sistersville Mayor Bill Rice reported in a Facebook post following the vigil, “This evening’s candlelight vigil for Levi Southerly was truly heart touching. In a time when you think everyone is divided, we can come together. Rest in peace Levi. I witnessed a lot of people who loved you.”
The community really came together at this difficult time for the family. Neighbors, community leaders, churches, school personnel, and people from beyond the immediate area expressed their sympathy through massages, cards, and attendance at the vigil.
It was easy to see this was a young man the community really cared about, and was loved deeply by his family. Although it was a great night to come together and show support for a grieving family, it’s was also a time to reflect back on the memories he left with everyone who knew him.
Many tears were shed on Thursday, and the pain will not go away quickly, but his memory will last forever.
Pictures often tell a story and if you have seen the pictures of this lovely boy with the big smile, all you can do is wonder why. Why anyone would say or do anything to cause a sweet soul to end their own life. Hopeful as a result lessons will be learned and those responsible will be able to live with the damage they have caused through their senseless acts.
Rest in peace Levi. You left many wonderful memories for your family and friends. Many kind words were spoken on Thursday, as Sistersville Park was filled with people, all wishing there could have been a better outcome, but knowing that Levi didn’t die in vain.