MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Celebrity Jamie Foxx joined the family of Trayvon Martin at a gala to celebrate the teenager’s life.
The Trayvon Martin Foundation hosted the second annual remembrance gala Sunday at the Signature Grand in Davie, in honor of Trayvon Martin’s 19th birthday.
“Lets not forget about his life, let’s not forget about what he lived for, and let’s not let his death go unnoticed,” said Jamie Foxx.
Martin was a student at Michael Krop High School when he was killed in Sanford, in February 2012. George Zimmerman was acquitted in his shooting death last summer.
“We are not spiteful people, we want to turn negative into positive,” said Tracy Martin, Trayvon’s father. “We want to send a positive message that through adversity, through trials and tribulations something positive can come out of it.”
Hundreds of supporters showed up to the event, and held candles as they sang happy birthday to Trayvon.
“That’s the sweetest and the saddest happy birthday,” said Sybrina Fulton, Trayvon’s mother. “I’m crying and smiling at the same time. It touched me because I know that Trayvon is smiling.”
Author Michael Baisden, Georgetown professor Michael Eric Dyson, and the families of Emmett Till and Oscar Grant were also guests at the event.
The dinner was part of a remembrance weekend in South Florida to focus on Trayvon’s life and to affirm the foundations pursuit of nonviolence strategies and restoration of wholeness of families affected by violence.
On Saturday, a peace rally to promote unity took place in Miami Gardens.
“They said Jaime, why you still got that Trayvon Martin shirt on? That ain’t in no more,” Foxx told the crowd. “That’s in Hollywood. I said ‘Well, Trayvon Martin is still dead and his mother still grieves. It’s about our kids man, let’s love and protect them.”
During the rally green balloons were released into the sky in Martins memory.
Martin’s family said God’s grace and mercy helps them get by in the time since his death.
“It has been 700 and 12 long days since Trayvon was killed but the good part about it, if there’s any good about it, is that you all are keeping his name alive,” Martin’s father, Tracy Martin, told the crowd. “You guys are our strength.
“Raise your hand moms, you know that there’s two things you don’t do. You don’t talk about somebody’s mother and you don’t mess with their children,” said Sybrina Fulton, Trayvon’s mother.
Martin’s family said events like this help them heal and their mission through their foundation is to help all children.
“Miami Gardens is our family. Sybrina grow up in Miami Gardens. Trayvon walked up and down 32nd Avenue, in fact, I’m putting a bid in, I’m politicking right now, to get that street named after “Trayvon,” said Fulton.