The family of Mike Brown has scheduled a public memorial for the slain teenager next Monday. Brown’s parents, Michael Brown Sr. and Lesley McSpadden, said they hope his body will be released to them in the next two days.
An online memorial fund for Brown set up by the family’s attorneys has raised $90,000, reports NPR. The money will go toward Brown’s funeral expenses, as well as legal fees. Supporters for Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson, who fatally shot Brown Aug. 9, raised $30,800 for his potential defense case in one day, and the donations may easily surpass the effort's $100,000 goal, according to New York magazine.
Some have compared Brown's death to the Trayvon Martin murder trial. In that case, killer George Zimmerman's website raised $200,000 toward his legal fees. Martin’s parents’ charity only raised about half that amount, which went towards establishing a criminal justice advocacy foundation in Martin’s name, reports Metro. Martin was shot and killed by volunteer community watchman Zimmerman in Florida in 2012.
Brown’s family attended Sunday a service in his memory at the Greater Grace Church just north of Ferguson, Missouri. More than 1,000 people gathered at the church, while another 500 unable to get in stood outside.
“What I want you all to remember is that Michael Brown was not just some young black boy. He was a human being, he was a younger cousin, he was a son, he was an uncle, a nephew, he was not a suspect, he was not an object, he was not an animal -- but that’s how he was killed,” said Ty Pruitt, Brown’s cousin, according to the Daily Mail.
A preliminary autopsy revealed the 18-year-old was shot at least six times, including twice in the head, the New York Times reported Sunday night. The fatal bullet apparently entered the top of Brown’s skull, which suggests his head was bent forward when it hit him. Dr. Michael M. Baden, a former chief medical examiner for the City of New York, said the fatal bullet was most likely the last one to hit Brown.