A WSB-TV Primetime Special.

Memorial planned to honor Atlanta Child Murder victims this weekend

A community group is holding a memorial ceremony to honor the Atlanta Child Murders victims who died 40 years ago. 

Sunshine’s Angel of Mercy is hosting the daylong event, 1 - 11 p.m. Saturday at the Historic Old Fourth Ward Park at 830 Willoughby Way in northeast Atlanta. 

The Atlanta Child Murders took place between 1979 and 1980. Nearly 30 black children and young adults were murdered, garnering national news. The murders have been the subject of popular podcast “Atlanta Monster” and TV crime specials. 

In March, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced that police and prosecutors would take a new look at evidence in the case using modern crime-fighting technology. So far, there haven’t been any leads result from the new investigation.

Saturday’s memorial will begin with inspirational music and performances. An hourlong ceremony will start at 4 p.m. and will include the ringing of a bell for each of the victims. A dove release, balloon display, and funeral processional honoring the victims will also be a part of the ceremony. 

Afterward, attendees will be treated to jazz and R&B acts. 


Despite new inquiry, no new answers in Atlanta Child Murders

How the AJC covered the Wayne Williams investigation from ‘Mindhunter’

Atlanta Child Murders: Who were the victims?

Wayne Williams: Atlanta Child Murders

Founder Sunshine Lewis said political and community leaders are expected to speak at the event, but names have not been finalized. 

Lewis has held the memorial ceremony for 20 years. She said one of the victims was found not far from her grandfather’s home. 

“You could stand across the street and see the child’s body lying across the street,” she said. The victim was seven years old. 

Lewis has helped with grief counseling and provided money to help families bury slain children. 

“I just wanted to do something to help others,” she said. 

The event is co-sponsored by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference Women, which will bring a quilt with the pictures of the slain children. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs. 

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.