A Beautiful Dream
A Letter from Dr. Jynona Norwood
Dear Community Supporters:
My name is Jynona Norwood, CEO of Cherishing the Children/Guyana Tribute Foundation. I am writing you today regarding the 918 American citizens who perished in the Jonestown Massacre. Although, I was never a member of Peoples Temple, we lost 27 family members in the Jonestown Massacre and 17 were youths. Among them were my loving mother, Fairy Norwood and a 3-month-old cousin, Charles Henderson, Jr. I rescued/kidnapped, my son from my family as they were raising him while I traveled and preached as an evangelist. These loving people were the kindest and bravest most selfless people you would have ever wanted to meet. Our loved ones were deceived! They were held in captivity by Jim Jones and we now need your help in remembering them.
We need your support and presence to erect the Cherishing the Children Healing Memorial Wall in memory of the 305 children, their families, Congressman Leo Ryan and the UPI news crew who perished in this incredible act of violence. The survivors and surviving families of Jonestown have resolved, with the public's help, to erect this memorial. The monument will be placed in the Evergreen Cemetery in Oakland, California where 406 bodies lay in a mass grave who are mostly children. In the spirit of those who honored the tragic passing of their loved ones in events such as the Jewish Holocaust, the Columbine shooting, the Vietnam War and most recently, the tragedy of 9/11, we envision the erection of this wall in memorial to the Jonestown Massacre. The children perished in Jonestown without a fighting chance and we must say "Never again........gone but not forgotten."
Although the donations have come in slowly over the years, the monies, which remain in escrow for the Cherishing the Children Healing Memorial Wall, still continue to gain interest. Senator Dianne Feinstein appointed the late police psychologist, Dr. Chris Hatcher to the surviving families for counseling. Dr. Hatcher became the first signature on the memorial wall bank account, along with former Human Rights Commissioner Rev. Eugene Lumpkin. Rev. Lumpkin was appointed by then Mayor Frank Jordan as our liaison to San Francisco City Hall. Dr. Hatcher and Rev. Lumpkin joined me as we opened the Jonestown Memorial Wall Fund with our own money. We have always had four signatures on our bank account. Also, it is mandatory that two signatures are required in order to remove any funds from the account. The Jonestown Memorial Wall Fund account is always available for public viewing.
We are not a part of any other groups who are collecting monies for any type of memorial in the name of the Jonestown victims. The staff remains vigilant in their efforts to erect the wall, which will have a three-fold purpose: To honor the sanctity of the innocent lives that were lost; to raise public awareness that you never give up your ability to think for yourself; and to question everyone and everything!
I implore you by making two requests:
1) To help us erect this Historical Memorial Wall by making a donation.
A percentage of the funds will be donated to students in building their future by giving scholarships to college or technical school. Jacque Behar is our scholarship director. You can send all donations to: KAIPERM (FCU) 2101 BROADWAY ST., OAKLAND, CA. 94612 attn: SHARON or you can send all letters with your sentiments about the victims with or without your donation to DR. NORWOOD, PO BOX 3330, HOLLYWOOD, CA. 90078.
Our key supporters are:
DR. MAYA ANGELOU "I heartily support the idea of a tributary wall dedicated to the spirits of those who were lost. I will be pleased to write a dedication to be inscribed on an architecture built for those purposes."
SENATOR DIANNE FEINSTEIN "I am proud to recognize all the staff and volunteers of the Guyana Tribute Foundation. Your work will help ensure that we will never forget the victims of Jim Jones. You are in my thoughts and prayers."
FORMER MAYOR ELIHU M. HARRIS "I support the construction of the Jonestown Memorial Wall to commemorate the Jonestown tragedy. This is an important issue and I will help in every way to make the memorial Wall a lasting reminder so that these men, women, and children have not perished in vain."
MARK LANE "They were innocent children. They went with their family and friends to try to build a better life. They carved a remarkable community out of an area that was a dangerously inhospitable environment. They developed a society, unlike the one that they had left, that provided a good school, health care and a place without racism. Forces that they could not control, not even influence, brought about the end of their experiment and the end of their lives. We should remember them, remember how they lived and why they died."
DICK GREGORY "Jonestown is one of the greatest tragedies of modern times that led the way before other catastrophic events. This tragedy was unprecedented and America did not know how to deal with this kind of mass death. Jonestown was the first major tragedy that people had in their living rooms. The fact that everybody watched it in their living rooms is the reason why America needs healing. The Wall represents our healing."
The wall is needed because it is a symbol of healing. The Memorial Wall will allow us the opportunity to pause and reflect our experience and stand as a Monument to others of our ability to heal. It is our vision to one day run our fingers across the names of our lost loved ones, embrace the spirit of their lives and continue in the love that was shared by them to us. Please give us your support to erect the "Cherishing the Children Healing Memorial Wall." as we heal. Thank you for your consideration in this matter.
Dr. Jynona Norwood