Seattle transgendered community holds Day of Remembrance

KING 5's John Langeler reports.

SEATTLE -- If the names of murdered transgendered people being read inside Seattle City Hall Sunday did not strike an emotional chord, the gruesome way they died triggered a symphony of sadness and anger.

"What goes through my mind is, 'what were they thinking during the last few minutes of their lives?'" said Melissa Batson, a transgender woman, "Were they saying, 'if only I wasn't transgender this wouldn't be happening to me?'"

The reading of names was in conjunction with the 18th annual Transgender Day of Remembrance.  Batson and Mac MacGregor helped organize the event at city hall.

"We have more names this year than we've ever had," said MacGregor, "As a transgender person, I sit there with my wife and stepson and know that it could be me."

"Has life improved for us? Legally, it has improved," added Batson, "As the laws have been passed and we've come out more, we've been attacked more."

There is also an overwhelming sense of apprehension within the community over how a Donald Trump presidency may impact those legal gains, particularly in Washington.

"People are afraid they're going to be targeted, now more than ever, because hate has been kind of associated with this election," said MacGregor.

Copyright 2016 KING


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