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West End loses longtime advocate to COVID-19

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Posted at 6:02 PM, Jun 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-04 19:11:33-04

CINCINNATI — COVID-19 cases are drastically down in the Tri-State, but the virus is still impacting communities. That includes the West End, where the neighborhood is mourning the loss of a longtime advocate.

Lillian Carr passed away from COVID-19 in April. Staff at the Seven Hills Neighborhood Houses said the center and Carr are intertwined. Following her death, the center is now trying to prevent others from contracting COVID-19.

Sheila Nared worked with Carr at the Trauma Recovery Center for Seven Hills Neighborhood Houses. Carr served as an advocate for crime victims for more than 30 years.

"She was always open and ready to jump right in there. And share her resources. She don't just help you or ask you what's going on with you. She continues to stick with you, and that's what it takes," Nared said. "For this all the sudden happen, it's unreal. Even today, it just ain't the same. It's empty. We've got an empty spot and I don't know what we're going to do to fill it. And it will never be filled.”

Nared said Carr was a mentor who taught her the ropes of victim advocacy.

"You couldn't help but gravitate towards her because of her spirit,” Nared said. “She really was a good person. And she really made it a point, every person she met, it was a lesson in it."

"She was an ongoing blessing to people down here in the West End,” said Alexis Kidd Zaffer, executive director of Seven Hills Neighborhood Houses. "I don't know what the center is going to be like without her."

The center is now holding various vaccine clinics in Carr's name. Carr did not get the COVID-19 vaccine.

"COVID was the impact, was the result of her not being here today,” Nared said.

Friends and family said the clinics are a way for Carr to continue serving the community, even if only in memory.

"If you haven't gotten vaccinated, please get vaccinated,” Nared said. Think about it. It could save your life, or save someone else's life. It can stop a family from being broke down, an organization. It can have an impact in so many ways, because she is going to be missed."