Prayer service held for shooting victims

The University held a prayer service for Jessica Moore, Nakeisha Vanterpool and Nicosia Henry on Wednesday in the Walsh Gymnasium.

The entire Seton Hall community was invited to “A Service of Memory and Healing” to remember Moore and pray for Vanterpool and Henry. Students were encouraged to wear “Pirate blue,” according to a broadcast e-mail sent by interim President Gabriel Esteban.

Esteban delivered the opening remarks in which he spoke of how the school has been coming together. He also touched upon the impression Moore has left on the community.

“Today is the day we remember the love of life Jessica brought into the world,” Esteban said.

Melissa Boege, president of the Student Government Association, gave the first reading from Isaiah.

Melinda Papaccio, Moore’s Core English I professor then took the stage. She described Moore as lovely, intelligent, kind, courageous and talented, and said she was “mature beyond her years” and the “embodiment of love and compassion.”

An excerpt from I Thessalonians was the second reading, courtesy of assistant dean of student activities Kyle Warren.

Msgr. Anthony Ziccardi, vice president for mission and ministry, gave the homily in which he compared the violence in the Sept. 25 incident to events in the Bible.

Luther Wright, former Seton Hall men’s basketball player, then presented a song of meditation. “It’s so Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday” by Freddie Perren and Christine Yarian was Wright’s song of choice. He stood front of the first row of chairs, in complete silence, and sang a cappella.

Members of Moore’s family gave remarks at the end of the service. They each thanked the Seton Hall community and the state of New Jersey for all they have done since the Sept. 25 off-campus shooting. They also asked the members of the University community to take care of each other and not to let Jessica’s blood be in vain.

“I’m gonna (sic) miss my daughter; God gained an angel” Moore’s father said. “If I can live the same way as my daughter did, I will see her again.”

The family also talked of their daughter’s love for Seton Hall.

“She always talked about bleeding blue,” a family member said. “She loved this school.”

Many members of the community wore blue and white.

“As I look out over a sea of blue, today is the day we show the world what it means to be a Setonian,” Esteban said.

Nicholas Parco can be reached at

Jessica Sutcliffe can be reached at

Author: Staff Writer

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