Rayshard Brooks protests at Downtown Wendy's

UPDATED: June 28, 2020 at 7:56 p.m.

Protestors created a memorial leaving flowers, shirts, balloons, and gifts at the Wendy’s on University Ave where Rayshard Brooks was killed. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
A digital billboard at “Ground Zero” honoring George Floyd.  Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
The interior of the Wendy’s on University Ave after it was burned down by protestors. Nothing but rubble is left. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
The remains of the Wendy’s on University Ave is covered with messages admonishing racism. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
Protesters at the Wendy’s on University show support for Black men. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth

It was dusk as I arrived at the Wendy’s on University Avenue where, only days prior, Rayshard Brooks was killed by Atlanta Police Department officers. Upon entering the parking lot, it was clear that this had been made into hallowed ground by Black Lives Matter protesters, who had created a memorial adorned with flowers, balloons, shirts, candles, letters and other paraphernalia.

Protesters were clustered in groups discussing current events and the reasons why they were in attendance. Shortly after the sun had completely receded to the horizon, protest organizers gathered around a candlelight vigil in which one candle was placed on the name of a Black person killed by police such as Tamir Rice, Fred Hampton, and Breonna Taylor. 

During the vigil, one man who wished not to be identified held a single candle in the air during a moment of silence lasting 8:46, the amount of time Minneapolis Police Department officer Derek Chauvin had his neck placed on George Floyd’s neck.

About an hour later, a small argument broke out between protesters as they discovered a man dressed in black garb was adding to the graffiti on the drive-thru side of the building. It was quickly dispersed when it was understood that he was painting a mural to honor Rayshard Brooks.

The full text at the bottom reads “The Revolution will be televised.” Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
Strangers hold hands during a prayer at the candlelight vigil. Protesters were encouraged to turn to one another and voice words of love and affirmation to each other. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
The remnants of the drive-thru that Rayshard Brooks fell asleep in before police were called. An altercation ensued, resulting in his death. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
After the candlelight vigil, this man lead a moment of silence and held a candle up for 8:46, the amount of time that Minneapolis Police officer, Derek Chauvin, had his knee on George Floyd’s neck before Floyd died. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
Protest organizers lead a candlelight vigil for many victims of police brutality. Each candle stands on top of the name of a Black person kill by police. Among those names are Fred Hamptop, Mike Brown, Tamir Rice, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Rayshard Brooks. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth
Graffiti adorns the Wendy’s on University Ave in remembrance of Brooks and voicing disdain for the the police’s role in his death. Hagen McMenemy | Avant-Youth

Support local journalism. Support independent journalism. Support Avant-Youth.