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‘Our journey is the same:’ Lexington women find fellowship through support group socials

‘Our journey is the same:’ Lexington women find fellowship through support group socials
Published: Jan. 22, 2022 at 1:29 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - A group of women in Lexington with one thing in common gathered together Saturday morning.

Those invited to the table were women impacted by gun violence. They were aunts, mothers, sisters and wives to victims of shootings.

Andrea Crocker thought of the idea. She said this social was the first of many, and it comes with an open invite.

“I have friends that already sit on that side of the table with me, they understand 2 or 3 o’ clock phone calls in the morning, but everybody doesn’t have that friend,” Crocker said.

Her sons Johntel Desean Crocker and DaMycal Tre Bolton both died due to gun violence. Crocker enlisted the help of her friend, Tonya Lindsey to get the socials started.

“My son was Ezavion Lindsey, he was 16 years old,” Lindsey said. She is president of Sisters and Supporters Working Against Gun Violence, a Lexington nonprofit raising awareness of gun violence in the community.

The women were joined by individuals who they often see at funerals. They have all been directly impacted by gun violence.

“I’m trying to come together with women on a happier note,” Crocker said. “The only time we seem to see each other, and these are people that I have something in common with, is during memorials, anniversaries, things like that.”

Besides stacks of pancakes at iHOP, they find fellowship.

“We’re hoping that when we fellowship we would get to know each other more...so we can keep creating our own community,” Lindsey said.

Crocker said in the days, weeks and months after loss, getting support from people facing similar situations is necessary.

“I want it to be where we have the ability to give other people information that they may need,” she said.

Crocker and Lindsey said the socials will be a space where laughter is encouraged and meals come with a side of vulnerability.

“My hope is every time we meet, someone is bringing someone,” Lindsey said.

If you have been impacted by gun violence and would like to attend a social, you can contact Tonya Lindsey by phone at 859-382-0052. You can also email her at swagsisters@gmail.com, or reach out to her on the S.W.A.G. Facebook page.

Lindsey and Crocker wanted to thank Stephanie Jacobs, the general manager of the iHOP on Palumbo Drive for allowing the group to hold their social at that location.

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