ROCHESTER, N.H. (CBS/AP) – A large crowd gathered Saturday night to remember slain reporter James Foley’s courage and heart during a vigil in his Rochester, New Hampshire hometown.
A nonprofit group that brings humanitarian aid to people in Syria organized the vigil.
The 40-year-old Foley was killed this past week by Islamic State militants. He was abducted in November 2012 while covering fighting in Syria.
“We are very honored to be here tonight. We are honored that you care and love Jim,” Foley’s father, John told the crowd.
Foley’s mother, Diane, also addressed the crowd.
“We want to thank you for understanding Jim’s heart. And I pray that you will pick up the challenge to love like Jim did,” she said.
Others condemned ISIS’s brutality.
“ISIS Is evil. ISIS is cancer. It needs to be eliminated,” said Dr. Salman Malik, of the Islamic Society of New Hampshire.
The group, NuDay Syria, says it wants to honor freedom and Foley’s belief in freedom for all, including the Syrian people who have been fighting against an oppressive regime. The group is an advocate for displaced Syrian girls and women who need help providing for their families.
Nadia Alawa, the founder of NuDay Syria, organized the event. She told WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Bernice Corpuz that Foley’s work as a journalist was incredibly important to the people of Syria.
“He really had that connection to the Syrian people,” she said. “He really believed that they deserved freedom like everybody else.”
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Bernice Corpuz reports