Domestic violence in spotlight at Chester Hill event remembering victims

Cindy Hollis Jones, of Philipsburg, doesn’t want anyone to forget her sister.

Deborah Hollis Harrison, who grew up within view of the Chester Hill Borough Building, was killed in June in Conshohocken, a casualty of domestic violence. A tree was planted in her memory at the borough building, not far from the one planted for Traci Raymond Miscavish, who was killed in March 2013.

“We don’t want it to happen to anyone ever again,” Jones said.

That is why she has spent the past few months working with the Raymond family and other friends and volunteers of Breaking the Silence Ministries on an event to spread awareness of domestic violence and help connect people with services for themselves or people they love.

Centre County Women’s Resource Center and Crossroads Project of Community Action in Clearfield and Jefferson counties were set up near those memorial trees.

“So many people say, ‘I didn’t know there was help out there,’ ” said Wendy Kephart, of CCWRC.

Sherri Kitchen-Farmery was happy with Saturday’s turnout, despite chilly, windy October weather. She knows it was making a difference.

“One girl, she was trying to teach herself not to go back to a bad relationship. That’s encouraging,” she said.

Dozens of balloons with messages of hope and remembrance were released before the conclusion. Jones and her daughter Renee held the huge bouquet, standing near the Raymonds, in the cloudy park. As a soloist sang “Amazing Grace,” the sun broke through the clouds.

For the families, it was bittersweet. They want to focus on the mission, but it is hard to ignore the pain.

“I miss her,” Jones said through tears.