Residents who attended a candlelight vigil for 14-year-old Devan Selvey after he was murdered outside of his Hamilton high school are calling for action on bullying.
“We want to thank you sincerely for all your prayers and your heartfelt sympathies. The outpour of cries for change have been heard tonight and we want to start a nation-wide movement for change,” Dale Tokarchuk, a spokesperson for the Selvey family, told the audience Wednesday evening.
“Bullying must stop! In Devan’s name, we can all make it happen — and we will make it happen. No family should ever go through a tragedy like this again. It stops here. It stops today.”
Tokarchuk called on those in attendance to offer their support to anyone being bullied.
“We want you to go up to them and yell in the top of your lungs, ‘STOP’ … as long and as strong as you can,” he said, as audience members yelled the word “stop” in unison.
WATCH: Hamilton community members remembered slain teen Devan Selvey and sent a message to try and curb bullying at his school. Kamil Karamali reports.
It was estimated that at least 200 people attended the ‘Candlelight Vigil Against Bullying, Jealousy, Hatefulness and for Love and Peace’ at Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School on Main Street East.
Before the vigil began, Suzanne Sullivan, Selvey’s aunt, encouraged students to speak up and tell someone if something is going to happen.
“Don’t be afraid of these bullies. Bullies are just people that are wanting attention, and if they’re not getting the attention they take it out on someone else.”
Organizers said the vigil was meant to be a way to mourn the teenager’s shocking death and to take a stand against bullying.
A GoFundMe crowdfunding campaign that has been set up to cover the costs of his funeral has surpassed its $35,000 goal.
A visitation for Selvey has been scheduled for Friday and a funeral service is set to take place on Saturday in Stoney Creek.
Selvey was fatally stabbed Monday afternoon in front of his mother after she said he was trying to run away from a group of people. Two teenagers were charged with first-degree murder.
Two other teenagers, a 16-year-old boy and 16-year-old girl, were arrested in connection with the attack but they have since been released unconditionally.