ST PAUL, Minn — On the fourth anniversary of the death of Philando Castile, dozens gathered at the Minnesota Governor’s Residence to call for change.
About 70 people attended the “March for Humanity” organized by Black Lives Matter, Minnesota. And among those holding signs while wearing masks under the hot sun, was Castile’s girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds.
“Four years feels like it was yesterday, July 6, 2016. Every single time I think about it, every day I wake up, every breath I take, I hurt. I cry. I mourn,” Reynolds said.
Reynolds and her then four-year-old daughter witnessed Castile’s shooting and death. Reynolds also shared her boyfriend’s final moments on social media.
Four years later, Reynolds says her daughter still struggles with what happened to Castile.
“She doesn’t understand. Like any eight-year-old now – who was a four-year-old when it happened – she doesn’t understand. [She] has so many questions, so many things. She’s worried. She’s constantly paranoid. She fears for her life. She doesn’t feel safe where she was raised,” Reynolds said.
And George Floyd’s death – along with others – has only added to that fear, Reynolds said.
But she also found hope in the diverse crowd gathered Monday afternoon, saying it signals that the greater community is now joining the call for change.
“Seeing these people out here of different races, different ethnicities, different colors, backgrounds. They don’t have to be out here fighting for us. They don’t have to be out here. But because they are out here, and because they are out here fighting for us and what they believe in their hearts to be true, I feel like change is going to come,” she said.