UPDATED: 8:44 a.m. Feb 5, 2020 —
Wednesday, Feb. 5 of this year would have been Trayvon Martin‘s 24th birthday. In response, social media users were taking the time to honor his young life that was taken from the world far too early.
On Feb. 26, 2012, Trayvon was just 17 years old when he was shot and killed by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch vigilante who pursued the teen even after he was told by local police to stand down. Zimmerman was acquitted of the second-degree murder charge in the name of self-defense and walks free to this day.
Since then, Zimmerman has consistently stayed in the media with deplorable behavior. On top of vile interviews, in January of 2015, he was arrested on suspicion of aggravated assault and domestic violence, but his girlfriend at the time dropped all charges. He disgustingly attempted to auction off the gun he used to kill Trayvon.
He was accused of criminally stalking a private investigator named Dennis Warren. According to CNN.com, Warren called Zimmerman’s family about a documentary on Trayvon Martin. After that, Zimmerman reportedly called Warren 55 times, left 36 voicemails, sent 67 texts and 27 emails all within nine days from December 16 to Christmas 2017.
Trayvon’s death brought national unrest and the birth of the Black Lives Matter movement. Florida activists fought against the state’s Stand Your Ground Law, and the movement drew the attention of Andrew Gillum when he was running for governor of the state.
“George Zimmerman was able to interpret the very presence of Trayvon Martin to be a threat,” Gillum said back in June as Tallahassee’s mayor when he called for the state to suspend the controversial law. “And because of Stand Your Ground laws, which have no place in civilized society, was able to engage him, snuff out his life and get away with it.”
In 2018, the six-part non-scripted series “Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story,” produced by Jay-Z, aired on the Paramount Network in July. The docuseries was based on the book “Rest in Power: The Enduring Life of Trayvon Martin,” which was written by Trayvon Martin’s parents.
See a sampling of the social media celebration of Trayvon Martin’s life below: