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CNN invited the mothers of Sean Bell, Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown to speak with Don Lemon about healing and survival, character assassinations of their sons and more in an emotional interview that offered hope to Brown’s mother, Lesley McSpadden. It’s almost like an unfortunate sisterhood of mothers who have lost their sons when there was absolutely no reason for each of them to die the way they did. But the silver lining here is that Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton and Bell’s mother, Valerie Bell can offer Lesley advice that will keep her encouraged at this extremely tragic time in her life.

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When Sybrina embraced Lesley, she said, “Just lean on Him. He going to cover you. He going to cover your family. And He’s going to make sure you’re okay. McSpadden’s head remained bowed from the time she met Sybrina Fulton and Valerie Bell and Valerie said, “You have to keep your head up, no matter what is done. Keep your head up. You can see your son in you.”

Lesley was quiet for most of the interview and Sybrina and Valerie said all they could to encourage Lesley. The video is a tear-jerker, so get your tissues ready.

Here’s a few of the most powerful moments from the interview:

Valerie & Sybrina’s advice on moving on:

Bell: Keep the memories in your heart, that’s going to help you to continue to carry on with your son, and believing and having faith in God will also help you and the close family members. That’s what keeps me, the memories of my son.  He always did tell me, “Ma, I got this.” So I’m telling you, ma, you got this. It’s okay to cry, scream, I still do.  It’s eight years, but you got this.

Fulton: You have to focus on when he was smiling. You have to focus on his first day of school, and you have to focus on Christmas day and things like that.  The happier times. Put a picture up when he was happy. And you have to focus on those. Just don’t focus on the death, because that’s going to eat away at you.

What Valerie & Sybrina can offer Lesley:

McSpadden: They’re speaking to me from experience. You know? They are offering me something right now that I can’t tell you what it is. But it’s something. And something is more than nothing.

On Being Whole Again:

Fulton: I don’t think it’s a matter of being a whole.  What I think it is is a matter of a new life.  This is the new life.  I can never go back to who I was and what I was because I’m missing something very precious in my life and something very special.

Bell: Losing my son was like losing a part of your body.  But you remember, you remember what that part of your body has done for you.  Like if you lose an arm, you knew what that arm did.  So my thing is keeping the memories that will keep you and carry you on.

In these sad times, it’s a beautiful thing to see these women come together to support one another. Our hearts bleed for mothers who have to bury their sons because of some senseless act of violence, whether at the hands of police or not. Join us in our efforts to give voice to the #YourLifeMatters movement because every single life, matters.


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