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3/20 Coalition hosts a “would’ve been” birthday celebration for Osaze Osagie in State College

osaze osagie birthday celebration
Maddie Miller
3/20 Coalition secretary Melanie Morrison (left), Osaze’s mother Iyunolu Osagie (center) and 3/20 Coalition community liaison Shannon Holliday (right).

On August 2, the 3/20 Coalition hosted a “would’ve been” birthday celebration for Osaze Osagie, a State College man who was killed by police in 2019.

Attendees gathered at 3 Dots in downtown State College to pay tribute to Osaze Osagie on what would have been his 33rd birthday. The celebration included cake, paper bag lantern decorating and books about equality. Osaze’s mother, Iyunolu Osagie, was in attendance. She said she is happy to see the community come together to celebrate.

“We have always encouraged the whole idea of getting people to come together. And, in particular, we like to celebrate his birthday because, for us, it has always been a special day,” Osagie said.

She said since the loss of her son, the coalition events and community support have been uplifting.

“It has eased the pain because without them, I don’t know. As a family, we were really falling apart. Just in terms of just the pressure, the pain, the trauma. But with a community standing with us, we’ve been able to stand,” Osagie said.

Coalition members said the organization plans to expand its social justice initiatives and continue to support marginalized people in the community.

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