“For her it wasn’t lip service, it was real”

Mark Heyer, father of Charlottesville victim Heather Heyer, discusses his loss...and explains why he has forgiven the man accused of killing her.

(WESH) The father of a 32-year-old woman killed while protesting the presence of white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia says he forgives the man charged in his daughter’s death.

Three people were killed and dozens were injured amid what is believed to be the largest group of white nationalists to come together in a decade to protest the city’s decision to remove a Confederate monument. A car rammed into a crowd of protesters, killing Heather Heyer, and a state police helicopter crashed into the woods, leaving two troopers onboard dead.

“My daughter was a strong opinionated woman that was willing to stand up for what she believed in. For her it wasn’t lip service it was real,” Mark Heyer said of Heather Heyer.

Mark Heyer said he doesn’t hold any ill will toward James Alex Fields Jr., the man who is believed to have been behind the wheel of the car that rammed into the crowd.

“I don’t hold any ill will toward this young fellow who did this, he’s stupid, OK. He’s only 20 years old. It don’t have enough sense to make a lifelong decision about nothing, you know,” Heyer said.

“He was misinformed, he was deceived and you know I forgive him flat out. I forgive him. The thing is, he’s going to have to live with the consequences, and he’s going to have to live knowing he took somebody’s life for the rest of his life. I wouldn’t wish that on nobody.”

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