Ricky Best, 53, and Taliesin Namkai-Meche, 23 were killed as they attempted to stop a racist man from spewing slurs aimed at two teenaged girls in Portland, Oregon last week. Micah David-Cole Fletcher, 21, was also injured in the attack but is currently in stable condition recovering.
35-year-old Jeremy Joseph Christian is currently being held without bail on counts of aggravated murder, attempted murder, along with a potential hate crime charge. Christian was confronted after the two men refused to sit idly as he berated the two teenaged girls. It was noted that he was "acting erratic" before the two young women entered the train, and was triggered by the sight of a hijab. The teens, one Muslim and one African American, were caught off guard as Christian began his tirade. Best came to their defense, telling Christian "You can't speak to them like that" and was attacked shortly after. Christian was identified as being an extremist with racist views, having been associated with Neo-Nazim.
Our deepest condolences to the two men who paid the ultimate price, answering the call against senseless racism.
"[Some] believe it is only great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay… acts of kindness and love.”