LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – An organization called “Move the Mindset” is recognizing the lives of lynching victims in Lafayette, La.

Ovide Belizaire and an unknown individual were two of six people who fell victim to the racist lynchings throughout the segregated history of Lafayette Parish.

Vice president of “Move the Mindset,” Ola Prejean, explained how there are many monuments remembering all different causes and people. “but there is very little recognition of people that were lynched and experienced racial terror lynching. This ceremony is part of that.”

Residents from all over the area joined in on the ceremony to recognize what occurred in the past and remember the lives of the slain individuals. One of whom is Chief of Minority Affairs in Lafayette Parish, Carlos Harvin.

Harvin said it’s great to see a diverse group. “Blacks and whites together to remember the gentleman’s name we know and also to remember the name of the man we don’t know. Harvin explained how the ceremony was to help bring closure. “To bring justice and to help instruct us and guide us so that we can move forward together as one people,” stated Harvin.

Those who joined the ceremony were able to listen to the stories of the recognized individuals and participated in the act of placing dirt in the jars also representing the two recognized individuals.

Ola Prejean said “what we feel is that soil represents the blood that was shed of people.” She continues to explain how it “represents the tears of people who suffered through the indignation of hard times and discrimination. It is a reflection of where we are.”

Prejean further explains how although this was the final soil collection ceremony for the six individuals, the next step is the historical marker project.

“We will be erecting markers to inform the community of the history of lynching and to give acknowledge of these individuals. All six who’s lives were taken horrifically and brutally in the 1800’s,” said Harvin.

Move the mindset has made it their priority to make sure Ovide Belizaire, the unknown individual, and the rest of the six’s lives will no longer be in vain.