A look at one of many #TDOR events around the country

This evening, as part of the sixteenth annual Transgender Day of Remembrance, nationwide memorials will be held to honor those whose lives were lost to acts of anti-transgender violence. According to the Transgender Violence Tracking Portal, over 268 murders of transgender and gender non-conforming people have been reported in the past year alone, and a majority of the victims are transgender women of color.

One such event will take place in Winona, Minnesota this evening. The vigil will include a candle-lighting, reading of victims' names, and remarks from JamieAnn Meyers, a trans advocate and activist who works with Minnesotans in secular and faith communities. Today, she published a piece on Huffington Post regarding the importance of today's events:

"The transgender and gender non-conforming people who were murdered this year stand as a stark reminder of the fear and hatred of trans people that still exists in many parts of our global society. This fear and hatred fills the hearts of those who cannot accept or understand that each person has the right to live in their true gender identity, as their true selves."

JamieAnn also cites GLAAD's Transgender Media and Education Program as a call to action, referencing that less than 10 percent of Americans say they know a trans person, while 90 percent say they know someone who is lesbian, gay, or bisexual. By celebrating trans folks as a resilient people in addition to remembering lives lost, JamieAnn sees today as an opportunity to "end the vicious cycle of murders and suicides of transgender and gender-nonconforming people" by encouraging allies to interrupt hurtful language and transphobic actions, joining together for understanding to end ignorance and fear, and "working together for justice so that every person is respected and accepted without regard to the differences that too often separate us."

To participate in a memorial near you, check this list of international #TDOR events by location.