Star Tribune: The New Survivors Memorial – Boom Island Park, Minneapolis

Oct 23, 2020 | people/passions

The new Survivors Memorial, near downtown Minneapolis at Boom Island Park, is the nation’s first permanent monument to survivors of sexual violence. It’s a reminder that survivors surround us, like veterans of some forgotten war, writes columnist Jennifer Brooks.

Every 73 seconds, someone in America is sexually assaulted, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network estimates. But no one built memorials to them — not until now.

“For far too long, the suffering of sexual violence victims and survivors has been forced into the shadows, swept under the rug,” said Sarah Super, survivor, speaking at the virtual dedication ceremony for the memorial she and thousands of others worked for years to fund and create. “This memorial brings our suffering into the light.”

The idea for a memorial came to Super in the first weeks after she was raped. As she spoke openly about the experience, she watched her story ripple out, touching other survivors, who reached back with stories of their own.

A series of panels, created by mosaic artist Lori Greene of @mosaiconastick, tell a story of survival. A shattered survivor curls up alone in a dark wood. Then a second figure arrives to hold her as she grieves. More and more figures approach, until the survivor stands on her own, surrounded and supported by her community.

The memorial stands in a sunny corner of the park, the city skyline at its back. Etched into it are words to remember, the next time a survivor shares their story. We believe you. We stand with you. You are not alone.

 

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The new Survivors Memorial, near downtown Minneapolis at Boom Island Park, is the nation’s first permanent monument to survivors of sexual violence. It’s a reminder that survivors surround us, like veterans of some forgotten war, writes columnist Jennifer Brooks. Every 73 seconds, someone in America is sexually assaulted, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network estimates. But no one built memorials to them — not until now. "For far too long, the suffering of sexual violence victims and survivors has been forced into the shadows, swept under the rug," said Sarah Super, survivor, speaking at the virtual dedication ceremony for the memorial she and thousands of others worked for years to fund and create. "This memorial brings our suffering into the light." The idea for a memorial came to Super in the first weeks after she was raped. As she spoke openly about the experience, she watched her story ripple out, touching other survivors, who reached back with stories of their own. A series of panels, created by mosaic artist Lori Greene of @mosaiconastick, tell a story of survival. A shattered survivor curls up alone in a dark wood. Then a second figure arrives to hold her as she grieves. More and more figures approach, until the survivor stands on her own, surrounded and supported by her community. The memorial stands in a sunny corner of the park, the city skyline at its back. Etched into it are words to remember, the next time a survivor shares their story. We believe you. We stand with you. You are not alone. Read more about the Survivors Memorial in the full story, linked in our bio. 📸: Photo by @lizrflores

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