Published Echo News November 4, 2022
Cassius Turvey’s mum, Mechelle, stood up in front of thousands at Monday night’s candlelight vigil to insist that she did not want her son’s death to be used as an opportunity to stir racial arguments.
“I want to make this really clear, we know racism exists but do not use my son’s tragedy as a platform to blow your trumpets,” she said.
“Blow them in your own choir, do not blow them in my son’s choir.”
Mechelle, a former Aboriginal Liason Officer, said it did not matter the colour of Cassius’ skin, only that we stand together to stamp out violence against everyone.
“And I just want to put this message out stronger, stronger and stronger, kids matter,” she said.
“Black, white, brown, pink, yellow, it doesn’t matter.
“We are all the same, we are all one people on this planet.”
Mechelle also spoke about the impact her son’s death had had across Australia and further afield as rallies and vigils were held in cities around the country and overseas on Wednesday.
She also went on to talk about Cassius’ name, which was chosen by his older brother, Jay, after Cassius Clay, the name Muhammad Ali was born with.
“I would like to thank my son for giving him that name as that name represents Cassius to the tee,” she said.
“Just like Muhammad Ali was, he wasn’t just strong in the boxing ring, but he took his strong words to the community and to the world.”
Mechelle thanked everyone for loving Cassius “whether you knew him or not” and spoke about the 15 fire boxes that were part of the ceremony, representing Cassius remaining “15 forever”.
“Justice for Cassius,” she said.
Cassius, friend to everyone
Teenager Iaeshia Dean spoke tearfully Monday night about her best friend, the “big friendly giant”, Cassius Turvey in front of thousands of mourners at a Midland candlelit vigil held in his memory.
Iaeshia wanted the crowd to know what type of person he was and went on to say that he was “a best friend to everyone”, “a shoulder to cry on” and “a teddy bear”.
“No matter what colour your skin was, no matter what nationality you are, or who you’re friends with, you could always count on Cassius to accept you for who you are,” she said.
“He had a big heart, a big brain and big dreams.”
Iaeshia also spoke about the impact Cassius’ death has had not only on her and his other friends, but also on the wider community as well.
“I am very happy to say, Cassius, your name is making a change,” she said.
“I hope you’re smiling down knowing how many people have heard your story.
“My brother, you deserved a life to live.”