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Eight years later, Philando Castile's legacy lives on

Philando Castile's memory and legacy lives on
Philando Castile's memory and legacy lives on 02:22

FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. — It has been eight years since Philando Castile was shot and killed by a St. Anthony police officer during a traffic stop for a busted tail light. Despite Castile's compliance in the traffic stop, he was shot five times at close range.

"I think about my son everyday," said Valerie Castile. "I'm doing OK but it never gets better."

Valerie Castile says the pain associated with Philando Castile's death has motivated her to turn tragedy into healing.

"Because of the things Philando did you know being at school early enough to help the children with disabilities get off the bus and make sure all the kids were fed even though he paid out of his pocket sometimes that was important for me to rally for food insecurities in our food system," said Valerie Castile.


Philando was a nutrition services supervisor at JJ Hill Montessori Magnet School in St. Paul. Because of how he cared for students there Valerie started the Philando Castile Relief Foundation. She raised funds to pay off cafeteria debt of kids who can't afford school lunch. Her work led to Gov. Tim Walz signing a bill providing a basic breakfast and lunch to every kid in Minnesota.

Those kids Philando served graduated high school this spring.

"A lot of those kids ended up at Central high school and to see such a large crowd of graduates this year and a lot of them had top honors," said Valerie Castile. 

Many of them are going into law enforcement and studying social justice to continue honoring Philando's legacy.

"It's important to keep his memory alive," said Valerie Castile. 

The site where Philando lost his life at the hands of police, now serves as a location of a beautiful garden created in his memory. She hopes people come to a vigil in his honor, to share what they've done in these past eight years, to help improve the lives of others. 

"I don't want it to be a sad day I want us to come together and fellowship and uplift one another and empower one another and live in peace and harmony," said Valerie Castile.

Philando Castile Peace Garden

The family will host a candlelight vigil at the Philando Castile Peace Garden at 8:30 Saturday night and a community BBQ at city hall Sunday at 5:30 in the afternoon.

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