80% of $7,000 goal
Join a Team
On December 3, 2022, Khalil Jefferson -- Air Force veteran, community volunteer, and beloved brother and son -- went missing in Greenville, North Carolina. His mother, Sonona Jefferson, worked tirelessly organizing community searches, coordinating with local law enforcement, and working with search and rescue teams. On January 6, 2023, Khalil's body was found by the dock alongside the South Tar Greenway and it was confirmed that he had died by suicide after a long battle with PTSD. The nonprofit organization Khalil Ross Jefferson, Inc. was founded in his name and works to end the stigma around mental health and improve policies for the families of missing loved ones in our community.
Many of us who searched the greenways for Khalil have found ourselves stopping by the dock to reflect and pray. Unfortunately, the dock is in severe disrepair after having been ravaged by several hurricanes. Together with the Friends of the Greenville Greenways (FROGGS), we are raising $7,000 to repair the dock as a memorial to Khalil and in honor of the community who came together to look for him, many of whom had never even met him or his family before. It is our hope that we can take a place steeped in grief and loss and make it a safe and encouraging space for every person walking the greenway to rest, find peace in nature, and be comforted by the tangible reminder that their life matters.
To reach this goal, we are holding a fundraising walk between Greensprings Park and the dock at 10:00am on Saturday, July 15, 2023 -- the day after Khalil's birthday. This walk follows the same path Khalil took on the day of his passing, and is about 2.5 miles one way. There is also the option to do a round trip walk via the Beech St. entrance back to Greensprings Park at just over the traditional 5k distance.
It is our aim to make this fundraising opportunity as inclusive as possible. All paths are paved and there are a number of benches if you need to stop and take a break. If you can't join us on the day, you can still support our efforts by 1) joining virtually and walking the same distance around your neighborhood or on a treadmill, 2) sponsoring another walker, and/or 3) sharing this page on social media.
If you're raising money individually you can join our public team "Khalil's Community Crusaders" or join a team of friends, family, or coworkers to reach a goal together. Join our Facebook group to keep up with event info, visit our website to see the scope of our efforts, or email us at [email protected] if you have any questions. Thank you for helping us share Khalil's story so that others may be inspired to rewrite their own.