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Hundreds pack LaVoy Finicum ‘meeting that never happened’


One year ago, Malheur Wildlife Refuge occupation spokesman LaVoy Finicum was shot and killed by law enforcement on his way to a community meeting in John Day. On Saturday, Finicum’s family held what was called “the meeting that never happened” at the Grant County Fairgrounds.

The line rounded the corner as people from all over the country came to honor Finicum and support and his family one year after his death.

One woman described the tragedy as “heartbreaking.”

“LaVoy was a model father, you know – a great man and a model father,” said an audience member.

The Finicum family held the meeting to advocate for Finicum’s beliefs that were the crux of the 41-day standoff.

“We want to continue his mission of educating the principles of liberty,” said his widow, Jeanette.

A panel of speakers discussed constitutional rights, free speech and property rights — all topics that were on the agenda of the meeting the group of occupation leaders never made it to.

“To be gunned down like that — it was horrific for our family — it still is,” Jeanette Finicum told NewsChannel 21. “The loss is tremendous, and he will never be able to be replaced.”

Even after his death, she believes LaVoy is supporting her and her family.

“I feel that he’s pleased with what we’re doing, and I think he’s so proud of his children for standing and being the voice that he can’t be right now,” she said.

The family said it hopes to take their tragedy and turn it into action, as they begin a life-long goal to continue LaVoy Finicum’s legacy.

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