IN PICTURES: Community remembers those who died homeless in Long Beach this year

As part of a memorial service Saturday night at Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls, about 100 residents, community organizers and faith groups honored the lives of 57 homeless individuals lost this year in Long Beach.

Attendees took turns reading the names of those who passed away as two facilitators lit a candle for each person.

“Listen to the names and imagine that each one of those persons had a family, had friends that they talked to every day in the street, that they talked to in the morning and said good night to,” said Steve Be Cotte, outgoing president of the Long Beach Homeless Coalition, the nonprofit that put the event together.

Be Cotte will be succeeded by Paige Pelonis as president of the coalition, he told the Long Beach Post.

Be Cotte reminded attendees that while these individuals were without roofs over their head, they were a part of the fabric of the community.

“Just like when any person is lost, it’s a loss for our community,” Be Cotte said.

As part of the night’s program, the audience also heard musical performances and prayers.

Organizers also provided free transportation for homeless individuals wishing to attend the event. Guests were allowed to arrive late to the city winter shelter to be able to attend.

A partial list of homeless individuals who died in Long Beach this year can be found here.

Steve Be Cotte, president of the Long Beach Homeless Coalition, welcomes an audience attending the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Rev. Elena Larssen conducts the opening prayers for the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

An attendee pays respect to portraits of people experiencing homelessness as part of a gallery during the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

An attendee walks down a hallway through faces of people experiencing homelessness as part of a gallery during the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

A woman, photographed by David Freeman, is pictured as part of a gallery of people experiencing homelessness during the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Attendees take a moment to view a gallery of people who experience homelessness as part of the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Cellist Daniel Smith performs, “The Infinite Stage,” during the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Cantor Sara Hass sings a Hebrew prayer during the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Cantor Sara Hass performs, “We Remember,” during the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Wendy Addy, left, and Theresa Santy, right, light candles in honor of the homeless people who passed away as part of the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls on Dec. 21, 2019. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Theresa Santy lights a candle in honor of a homeless person who passed away. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Wendy Addy lights a candle in honor of a homeless person who passed away. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Attendees take a moment of silence. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

Long Beach residents, community organizers, and faith groups honored the lives lost this year as part of the 2019 Homeless Memorial Service on Saturday night at the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Bixby Knolls. Photo by Crystal Niebla.

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