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'Hate has no home in Virginia' | State leaders comment on 4th anniversary of deadly Charlottesville rally

The Aug. 12, 2017, rally drew in white nationalists and counter protesters and resulted in a woman’s death after a car drove into a group of the counter-protesters.
Credit: Adrian Guerra (13News Now)
Governor Ralph Northam speaks at a ceremonial bill signing for environmental legislation on June 25, 2021.

VIRGINIA, USA — Virginia leaders commented Thursday morning on the fourth anniversary of the deadly Charlottesville rally that drew hundreds of white nationalists and counterprotesters to the city.

On Aug. 12, 2017, multiple people were injured and a young woman, Heather Heyer, was killed after a car drove into a group of counterprotesters. In 2019, the driver, James Alex Fields Jr., was given two life sentences. 

Two Virginia State troopers assisting with the rally response, Trooper Berke Bates and Lt. Jay Cullen, were also killed after their helicopter crashed.

Gov. Ralph Northam, elected to office the year of the attack, released a statement noting the progress the state has made while acknowledging the work that's left.

“Four years ago, white nationalist violence erupted in Charlottesville and resulted in the deaths of Heather Heyer, Lt. Jay Cullen, and Trooper-Pilot Berke Bates. Today, we pause to honor them and all of the lives forever changed that day.

Sadly, white nationalist violence has increased since then, and we continue to grapple with the realities and impacts of systemic racism—even as some pretend it does not exist.

These past four years have also seen great progress. Across the Commonwealth, monuments to white supremacy have come down—including in Charlottesville just last month. Protests for racial justice continue to lead to real and lasting change.

These are reasons for hope. There are more people who want justice and healing, fairness and equality, than those who want to hide history and promote hate.

We have much work to do, and I have faith that we have the will to ensure that hate has no home in Virginia.”

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine shared a tweet remembering the lives that were lost that day.

U.S. Sen. Mark Warner said in a tweet he stands with the Charlottesville community and is committed to combatting domestic terrorism.

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