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Every winter, homeless men and women die from exposure because they don’t have a place to sleep. Their deaths are marked on the longest night of the year in an event called National Homeless Person’s Memorial Day.

This year, Charlottesville joined the list of cities that hold a service. About sixty people gathered around a makeshift altar next to the Community Chalkboard on the downtown mall. They lit candles and listened as the Reverend Liz Emrey of New Beginnings Christian Church conducted the memorial service.

In this edited recording of the service, you’ll hear from Dave Norris of PACEM, the Reverend Jim Bundy from Sojourners United Church of Christ, Dr. Mary Washington of the Thomas Jefferson Coalition for the Homeless, and Police Chief Tim Longo. There’s also a couple of songs, as well as testimonies for the dead.

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