Saying Goodbye to Mitrice Richardson
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(Thanks to Autostraddle for this video clip about Latice Sutton.)
This is from the blog, Lez Get Real:
On Friday, friends, family and well-wishers went to the Inglewood Park Cemetery to pay their last respects to Mitrice Richardson. Her remains were sealed inside a rose-bedecked coffin inside the chapel. On 9 August, Richardson’s remains were discovered by a park ranger in Malibu Canyon, some two and a half miles from where she had last been seen. The park rangers were searching for illegal marijuana plants when they discovered her remains. Police do not believe that there was foul play, nor that she fell to her death. Coroners estimate that her remains had been in the canyon for six to eleven months.
Lauren Sutton, who was held a single sunflower, stated “It’s her favorite flower. They’re so bright and sunny, and that was so her. . .Even though we are here to say goodbye to her, we are asking the community to help us seek justice for her.” Lauren Sutton is the sister of Larry Sutton, Mitrice Richardson’s step-father.
In the chapel, photos of her were flashed on a video screen. Some eighty people gathered in sweaters and shawls in a strong wind to hold lighted candles for a vigil. A recording of Aretha Franklin’s version of the Simon and Garfunkel song “Bridge Over Troubled Waters” played. Psychologist Ronda Hampton told those gathered that she had reluctantly taken Mitrice on as an intern, but that she ended up dazzled by her. Hampton stated “She was bright, quick. She was compassionate. I knew this girl has a gift — she’s going to be a psychologist.”
Michael Richardson, Mitrice’s father, spoke of coping with her death “God did it in a way I could accept — over 10 months.”
Jordan Allen, a staff pastor from Faithful Central Bible Church, quoted the Bible to the crowd “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” He went on to say to those gathered “It sounds comforting unless you happen to be the ones sitting in this front row….The morning will come when you’ll be able to get up and make it from sunup to sundown without breaking down. And you’ll remember the joy.”
There will be no joy until there is justice. Justice for the unquiet spirit of Mitrice Richardson.