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I've lots to do to get ready for the vigil this afternoon, so I am reposting the diary I wrote day before yesterday, then getting off the computer.  It's a beautiful day outside! The local response has grown in the past few days.  I have no idea how many people will show up for Abeer Qassim Hamza's Birthday Vigil... But I hope many take a few moments today and consider what a treasure was taken from the world on March 12, 2006. Abeers means the Fragrance of Flowers... At fourteen years old she had only potential before her.  She might have been the person to bring peace to the Middle East.   She might have given birth to that one and raised her.. Or she might have been a teacher and shaped the souls of many children.. We'll never know.

Let's take her death out of the realm of senseless by our response.  Let us transform her death, and that of the her parents and little sister, by our own thoughts and deeds. Let us extend love to her surviving brothers.  Thank you for your support.

Please support our Fast Friends vigil for innocence,  even if you do not intend to fast.. Please take a moment on Saturday and think about what kind of impact Abeer Qassim Hamza might have had on the world, if she had not had her life stolen from her.  Think about what kind of impact Abeer's little brothers might have on the World, if they grow up with the horrific memory they have unmitigated because of a lack of response from the American people. Prehaps a just and CARING response from Americans might prevent another two person from hardening into a terrorist, like Osama Bin Laden.  America owes those kids a momentous debt. Let's give it some thought on what would have been their sister's 15th birthday.  

Just a short note to let all those interested in the Fast Friends vigil for innocence this Saturday.  Last night when I went to the regular Wednesday night vigil, Lois brought me the name  of the little park where we will be meeting from 3pm to 4pm, on Saturday August 19th. She told me the park had been named for a girl who died as a teenager, so our meeting there seems particularly fitting.  How many parks are named for teenage girls?  She must have been a wonderment...

This morning I googled the name of the park and found the story of a young lady who would have made a GREAT KOSSAK, had she lived past the age of 16.  She was spirited,  sarcastic (Kossaks read : snarky)and witty, and could kid just about anyone out of despair.  Her name was Etta Turner.  She made such an impact on the people around her in her short life,  a charity was set up in her name to help Bolivian children and women.  Why Bolivia? Because she was an exchange student living in Bolivia,  when she died in the  bus accident.  She had a particular love of the Bolivian people...

Here is the note /update I posted on my website this morning that has some links to the Etta Projects charity.:


Posted by : ilyana  on Tuesday, August 15, 2006 - 05:29 PM PST

opportunites for action

This Saturday August 19th would have been the 15th birthday of Abeer Qassim Hamza. I am one of some folks who are going to fast and vigil in memory of Abeer, and symbolically all the innocents who have suffered in the Iraq War. I will be fasting from midnight to midnight. There will be a vigil ceremony downtown , at the same little park where 75 peace demonstrators met to vigil in spirit with Cindy Sheehan's nationwide, nearly a year ago. I'm also hoping there are presents! Lots of presents for Abeer's little brothers. We will light 15 candles for Abeer and maybe sing a song.
*Update: Locally we will meet at Etta Turner Park, whose address is:
 1327 Bay Street Port Orchard, WA, at West Bay Center,  from 3pm to 4 pm Pacific Daylight Time. Please join us, if you live locally.  If not, join us in spirit during the same time, where ever you are. Be sure, if vigiling publically, to do so with at least one other person.  

Until last evening I didn't even know the name of the park,  but one of the people I vigil with Wednesday evening, Lois,  brought me the information.  Synchronistically, the park is named for a socially active teenage girl named Etta Turner. She was an incredible spirit who left such an impact on the people around her, that a charity was set up in her name to aid poor children in Bolivia. Etta died in a bus accident at age sixteen,  while living as an exchange student in Bolivia.

The park, that is named for Etta, was built through the "burrito club" volunteers and funded by the Rotary club. The City of Port Orchard was given the park on February 22, 2005.  Read the end of the March 2005  newsletter (a PDF FILE) for information on the park itself.  I have contacted the Etta Project Charity to see if they will sponsor the fund raising efforts for Abeer Qassim Hamza's little brothers.  Perhaps by Abeer's 16th birthday, we will have raised enough support to take good care of Abeer's brothers as they finish growing up.  I will post developments as they occur.

Originally posted to ilyana on Sat Aug 19, 2006 at 08:52 AM PDT.


For Abeer Qassim Hamza today

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Comment Preferences

  •  Take your tips, Please (8+ / 0-)

    and put them in the recommended pot,  so this effort gets some exposure and discussion...Thank you:-)

    "Let us not be conservative with compassion. Be generous with compassion."

    by ilyana on Sat Aug 19, 2006 at 08:43:22 AM PDT

  •  Thanks OPOL (5+ / 0-)

    for the recommend... and for shining like the gem you are. :-)
    Got to go and put together candles and cut out hand shields for those hands that will be holding candles..

    and paint on my peace painting...The group I vigil with Port Orchard Citizen Against WAR (POCAW) is 100% behind this effort now...

    I need to think of a short powerful message...

    "Let us not be conservative with compassion. Be generous with compassion."

    by ilyana on Sat Aug 19, 2006 at 08:55:29 AM PDT

  •   I have to get off the computer (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Avila, jimstaro, DSPS owl, Cronesense

    And finish getting  ready for our vigil
    As it is, at this moment I feel like most of the Kos community has said, as W C Fields was fond of saying:

    "Go away kid, you bother me".

    An acrostic limerick by a self proclaimed member of the Dood poet society :

    Abeer means the Fragrance of Flowers
    Bad men stole the rest of her hours
    Even though she is gone
    Each thought that lives on
    Remembers her young brothers' sorrows.

    by ilyana on Abeer's 15th birthday...

    "Let us not be conservative with compassion. Be generous with compassion."

    by ilyana on Sat Aug 19, 2006 at 09:33:08 AM PDT

  •  Bye bye for now Kossaks (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro, Cronesense

    I'll let you know how the vigil goes...
    Blessings on everyone...

    "Let us not be conservative with compassion. Be generous with compassion."

    by ilyana on Sat Aug 19, 2006 at 09:44:16 AM PDT

  •  Ilyana, this is a lovely diary....... (5+ / 0-)

    I hope to see some stories about various vigils in her name.  I have thought of her every day since the story broke, and I know she will not fade easily from my memory.  I will be doing my fast and candle ceremony in private and focusing my energies toward peace.
    Thank you for all that you have done in her name.

    Rest in Peace, dear Fragrance of Flowers.  I hope some day a sweet-smelling rose will be named in your honor.

    •  What a lovely idea! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Avila, jimstaro, Cronesense

      A rose named for Abeer :-)
      thank you for kindness Cronsesense :-)
      I stayed up till midnight last night, and toasted Abeer and her family with a glass of water to begin the fast...
      Now I am really out of here..:-)

      "Let us not be conservative with compassion. Be generous with compassion."

      by ilyana on Sat Aug 19, 2006 at 10:00:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Vigil begins in 38 minutes... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Avila, Cronesense

    Think about how we can protect the innocent...

    "Let us not be conservative with compassion. Be generous with compassion."

    by ilyana on Sat Aug 19, 2006 at 02:12:59 PM PDT

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