. - Friends and family gathered Saturday night in Tucson to remember loved ones lost to violent crime.
Dozens of people showed up for Homicide Survivors’ annual candlelight vigil to honor and remember murder victims.
Michael Katz, whose sister was shot and killed in 2008, now works with the non-profit to comfort people through their pain just like he was helped years ago.
Katz said the memorial service is a solid opportunity for families to realize that they’re not alone in their pain.
"It's important to come out here only if you're ready and you're ready to handle the emotional impact of such an event," he said.
This year’s service included a blessing from a spiritual leader and the names of victims read aloud. Katz said it can be sad to see new faces at the event because it means more lives are lost, but the event as a whole is a time for healing.
"I wish we never had to see new families out here,” he said. “But it's just amazing that we all are able to get together like this…it's more of a celebration in memory of our loved ones."
Homicide Survivors holds this memorial every year during Crime Victims Rights Week.