ARLINGTON, Va. --
Despite poor weather conditions, dozens of people gathered at the Women's Memorial Oct. 16 for the 3rd Annual Domestic Violence Candlelight Vigil.
The candlelight vigil is held during domestic violence month in hopes of raising the awareness level in both the military and civilian sectors, said Army Lt. Col. Barry White, Fort Myer chaplain.
"We are here today to inform people about domestic violence, and that it does happen," White said. "Pay attention to the people you know, keep your eyes open and if they open up to you, help them find the help they need."
Inside the memorial, which is located next to Arlington National Cemetery, three candles sat center stage representing domestic violence victims and civilian and military communities, White said. The two smaller candles symbolized the civilian and military communities coming together to mourn the victims of domestic violence. A moment of silence followed once the candles were lit.
"These candles represent victims who have died from domestic violence and those who were lucky enough to survive the abusive behavior," White said.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, four women die each day from domestic violence.
"Like these candles being lit or the banner being raised during domestic violence month in October, when the banners come down and the flames go out there are still people suffering through abusive relationships,” said Air Force Capt. Buddy Walker, a chaplain at Bolling Air Force Base.
Dannielle Semilla, family advocacy program manager for Fort Myer, said the first step to take if experiencing abusive behavior within the military is contacting your victim advocate located with the Family Services Center.
For more information on family advocacy programs visit www.fmmcmwr.com/fap