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Bells toll in Herkimer in honor of shooting victims
HERKIMER, N.Y. (WKTV) - The bell at the old Herkimer County Courthouse tolled seven times Monday morning at 9:30, with seven seconds between each toll for the seven victims of the shooting rampage on March 13th, the four men who died, then two others who were injured and a police dog.
It was done at 9:30 a.m., the time the original call came in to the authorities back on March 13th.
Herkimer County declared Monday a Countywide Day of Remembrance to honor the victims of the shootings in both Herkimer and Mohawk.
Herkimer County Sheriff Christopher Farber says the reason behind designating this day as a Day of Remembrance was to not only remember the victims, but to also help the community begin to heal,
"This is part of the healing process," Sheriff Farber said. "You know, the benefit they had yesterday was incredible, but all of that I think is part of the community healing and that's important to do all this stuff."
It was important for Herkimer resident Cissy Rando to be outside the old courthouse when the bell was tolled.
She brought balloons and released them in the air as each bell was tolled.
Rando says each balloon has a message inside.
"Just a remembrance and hope somebody finds them with a note saying heal," she said.
Rando knew one of the victims well - 51 year old Mike Renshaw of Frankfort who was killed at Gaffey's Fast Lube in Herkimer. She says everyone called him 'Mikey.'
She says she can't imagine what his fiance must be going through.
"I just can't imagine having somebody ripped right from your heart," Rando said. "He was going to retire and go down south and leaves a fiance who is just a wonderful person. He'll never know his grandkids."
Farber says it was definitely a moment to reflect when the bell tolled.
"If you looked around, there were a lot of people standing around in the distance, people standing in the windows of the county building, for the moment of silence," Sheriff Farber said.
He added it was nice to see so many purple ribbons on homes and businesses throughout Herkimer County, put there to honor the victims.
As Rando let go of her last balloon Monday morning she said softly, "Rest in peace, Mikey".