PENSACOLA, Fla. (WRKG) — Pensacola mother Lavon Brown lost her son Labar Brown after he was murdered on Oct. 22, 2012. Since then, Lavon Brown has made it her mission to bring awareness to homicide and provide herself and others a peaceful place to grieve.
“I knew that I couldn’t bring him back,” said Brown. “But I knew that I could help others during the process.”
With the help of Mayor Grover Robinson and other members of the community, Brown has created The Garden of Peace and Hope. Located at Corrine Jones Park, the garden is meant to be an alternative to places like memorials and cemeteries that can bring back painful memorials for those in the grieving process.
“This place is a garden of peace and hope,” said Brown. “A place of healing. That way they can come and reflect on the good memories they had. The joyful memories they had. Make them smile.”
Brown also works with ‘PAIN’: Parents Against Injustice and Negligence. The organization provides support to grieving parents with counseling and other resources, and promotes nonviolence to the youth in the community.
Brown is overjoyed by the progress they’ve made at Corrine Jones Park, but she hopes to soon place a monument, and another bench at the garden. Both of which will need more funding.
On the anniversary of her sons death, Brown visited the Garden of Peace and Hope. That’s when she truly felt her efforts pay off.
“I came and sat on the bench and I was like this is what it’s all about,” said Brown. “Because I had a good day that day. I choose joy, I choose happiness and I reflect on the good memories that I had with him.”