US & Canada

Charlottesville: Who was victim Heather Heyer?

A memorial shows a picture of Heather Heyer at her place of death with 'no place for hate' sign by it. Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Heather Heyer, 32, died after being hit by a car that ploughed into a crowd of counter-protesters

"If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention" was the last public Facebook post made by Heather Heyer.

The paralegal and Charlottesville native was killed after a car rammed into a group of protesters near a "Unite the Right" rally in the city on Saturday.

Her mother told the Huffington Post she wanted her daughter's death to be "a rallying cry for justice and equality".

"Heather was about stopping hatred," she said of the 32-year-old.

"She was there with her friends, and she was trying to simply cross the street as the movement was breaking up that day, and she was ploughed down by a young man who was intent on spreading hate and thought hate would fix the world," she told NBC.

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionMarissa Blair, friend of Heather Heyer: "It was an act of terror"

At work Ms Heyer provided legal help to people at risk of repossessions and evictions.

Her manager, Alfred Wilson, described her as a "a very strong, very opinionated young woman" who was opposed to President Donald Trump and Jason Kessler, the blogger who organised Saturday's Unite the Right rally.

"She would literally sit in the office and cry at times because she was worried about what was going to happen to the country," he said.

Mr Kessler was chased away from a press conference on Sunday when he tried to blame Virginia's police for the outbreak of violence.

Vigils were held across the country for Ms Heyer, as senior politicians offered their condolences for her death.

Image copyright Getty
Image caption Tributes have been paid to Ms Heyer who died protesting the far-right rally in her hometown

A GoFundMe page quickly raised over $225,000 (£190,000) for her family.

James Alex Field Jnr, a 20-year-old man living in Ohio with far-right links, was charged with her second-degree murder.

US Vice-President Mike Pence condemned the act, saying: "We have no tolerance for hate and violence from white supremacists, neo-Nazis or the KKK."

President Donald Trump has been widely rebuked for not denouncing those groups specifically, instead criticising violence on "many sides".

Related Topics

More on this story