Coast-to-coast vigils are being held this week for Mollie Olgin and Mary Kristene Chapa, the young lesbian couple found shot on Saturday in a park in Portland, Texas. According to police, “there’s no evidence to suggest that this crime was committed as a bias against the girls or their lifestyle,” Portland Police Chief Randy Wright said Tuesday. It was the first homicide of the year for Portland, unsettling the Texan community.
Even though authorities aren’t yet classifying the tragedy as a hate crime, and a local news article oddly skirts around the terms “gay,” “lesbian” or “homosexual,” our community is showing its solidarity with vigils around the nation this week: Residents in Portland are holding a vigil and candlelight walk on Friday at 6pm. Washington D.C.‘s vigil will be at Dupont Circle also on Friday at 6pm. Activists in San Francisco have planned a vigil for tonight at 7pm at the Harvey Milk Plaza.