Supporters in Aiken running 2.23 miles for Ahmaud Arbery at Odell Weeks Center


AIKEN, S.C. (WJBF) — People across the nation are remembering the life of a Georgia man cut short by gun violence. Several groups rallied together at the H. Odell Weeks Center in Aiken to hold a memorial 2.23-mile jog and walk in Ahmaud Arbery’s honor. Friday, May 8 would have been his 26th birthday.

“I always thought that change had to be something huge and elaborate and I realized it was just over a Facebook post. That change could happen,” Tamber Watson told NewsChannel 6’s Shawn Cabbagestalk.

The incident in Brunswick, Georgia especially hits home for a woman raising two males in Aiken. Shawn asked her, “What do you tell your sons whenever they leave home to make sure they come back at night? “Be aware of their surroundings all the time. And don’t go anywhere where you don’t know your surroundings because you just don’t ever know,” Deborah Potts said. “Always traveling a group and just be aware of them and be safe,” she added.

“I don’t like them wearing hoodies with their hats on. It’s not safe. I want them to come home every day,” Watson shared.

But leaders in the community like the Concerned Ministers Fellowship say it’s needed to save yet another life to bring a feeling of greater peace.”The world is in a bad enough shape with the pandemic that is going on, but to still see the underlying evil that is still among us today,” President Rev. Paul Bush said. “One thing that’s most important and that is love toward humanity,” he added.

So this group of several dozen will keep hitting the pavement, so those like Deshaun Potts can have a fighting chance. “I just made sure like I’m not doing nothing wrong and like I’m keeping myself like where I need to be at the right time and I made sure I’m like getting in the wrong situations isn’t fair as a black man to have to worry about that,” he said.

“We pray for his family, pray for his mother and, anybody involved in it,” Potts said.”I hope and pray something eventually will be done to keep everybody safe out there,” Deborah Potts said.

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