MURFREESBORO – It was just a simple gesture in memoriam.
As the sun began its descent over the fields on Vaughan Creek Road, a group of girl scouts were bathed in a warm glow as they tied a ribbon around a tree.
On Tuesday, Boykins (Va.) Girl Scout Group 5073 placed a black and pink ribbon in memory of not the brutal act of violence that was discovered here nearly a year ago, but of the lives of sisters Dorothy Hobbs and Nellie Bradley.
Hobbs and Bradley, from Emporia, Va., were found murdered on Aug. 4, 2006 in a wooded area near the tree where the scouts placed the ribbon. They were last seen alive in Boykins, Va. giving back to the community by dropping off a donation for Relay for Life at Boykins Baptist Church.
“We wanted to do this because they were supposedly last seen alive in our area,” said Girl Scout Group Leader Kisha Watford. “Some of the scouts know the relatives.”
For Watford, an Ahoskie native who now lives in Boykins, it was important to think of the victims’ relatives especially around the time of the Watermelon Festival, an event known for its family oriented activities.
“We want to remember them and their family…just remember the innocent lives,” she added.
A small group of seven participated in placing the ribbon and was vocal in what they wanted it to symbolize for passersby.
“I hope it brings back good memories (of the sisters),” said Senior Girl Scout Raven Powell, 14.
She added by placing the ribbon in remembrance of the sisters shows the girl scouts can reach out to others through community service and that all ages are affected by what happened.
Girl Scout LeAndra Watford, 13, also wanted the ribbon to serve as a reminder of Hobbs and Bradley.
“People haven’t forgotten about it, but they don’t think about it as much anymore,” said LeAndra. “I hope they remember them for who they were and what they did…and the good things in life.”