As part of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill joined members of the community on October 18, 2018 at a vigil in Gresham to honor the survivors and to remember the lives lost due to intimate partner violence.
“These gatherings are good for all of us,” Underhill said. “They keep us resilient and put the wind in our sails. They resolve us to keep fighting hard for the rights of families, the rights of victims and the rights of anyone who suffers violence in our community.”
Red wooden statues were displayed at the gathering. Each displayed the names and stories of individuals killed because of domestic violence. One of the silent witness statutes was for Carol Amini who was killed by her husband in a shooting in 1994. She lived in Gresham and worked as a receptionist at a local television station.
“It occurred right across the street from Mount Hood Community College,” Underhill said. He prosecuted the case when he was assigned to the Domestic Violence Unit. “Carol Amini and a foreign exchange student [Stacey Salesman] were both murdered by Carol’s husband. A second exchange student [Janette Weekes] was also wounded during the shooting and had to fake her own death. She lived to testify at the trial.”
Carol’s husband, who is now 83, is serving a true life sentence in the Oregon State Penitentiary.
State Representative Carla Piluso, who hosted the gathering, commended the work that is being done to reduce and end domestic violence in the community.
“We come together to recognize the challenges that individuals face around domestic violence,” Piluso said.
Gresham Mayor Shane Bemis also attended Thursday’s vigil and said domestic violence can impact anyone.
“Many people in the community have experienced domestic violence in some way or another,” Bemis said. “We have a big responsibility to our children and to teach them the right ethics and standards. This is something that is definitely within our grasp to change.”
Contact: Brent Weisberg, Communications Director