The north country comes together for “Justice for Vanessa” and to prompt change

The north country comes together for “Justice for Vanessa” and to prompt change

CALCIUM, N.Y. (WWNY) - The murder of a Fort Hood soldier has grabbed the attention of the entire nation. Now, it has led the north country to march for a change: a change in the military.

“Justice for Vanessa” rang out along Route 11 in Calcium Sunday afternoon as dozens of people marched for a change.

Vanessa Guillen was an alleged victim of sexual assault. She went missing from Fort Hood on April 22 of this year, and on June 30 her remains were found near the base.

On Sunday, the north country community responded.

“It took just two civilians to organize this and a lot of love,” said Yetzi Viccaro, who organized Sunday’s march.

Viccaro’s husband is stationed on Fort Drum and she says stories like Guillen’s happen too often.

“A lot of soldiers in the military, they don’t feel that they have that help or assistance. Being a civilian, I want to let them know that you are heard, and that’s why I wanted to create this march,” said Viccaro.

These women say these stories are rarely reported.

“There’s so many sexual assaults in the military that a lot soldiers cover up. They go through great lengths to do this,” said marcher Brittany Duncan.

She says this isn’t just an army issue.

“This is not once specific branch. This is all branches. This is the entire armed forces. This is every base across the United States, including overseas,” said Duncan.

But now, the north country along with the United States is calling for justice.

Sunday night there is a candlelight vigil in honor of Vanessa Guillen at the Iraqi Memorial Bridge.

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