A grieving mother paid tribute to her Good Samaritan whose throat was cut after he tried to intervene when a white supremacist launched an Islamophobic tirade at two young Muslim women on Friday night in Portland.
Asha Deliverance wrote a touching tribute to her son Taliesin Myrddin on Facebook: “Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche, My dear baby boy passed on yesterday while protecting two young Muslim girls from a racist man on the train in Portland.”
“He was a hero and will remain a hero on the other side of the veil. Shining bright star I love you forever.”
The alleged attacker, identified as Jeremy Joseph Christian, 35, slashed the throats of three people as the Metro Area Express (MAX) light rail train was pulling into a station in the northeast corner of Portland – leaving two dead and one injured, according to the Independent.
Witnesses say Christian was seen ranting on the train about many topics, using “hate speech or biased language,” before turning his racist abuse at two young women, one of whom was wearing a hijab, and then attacked the men when they came to their defense. One of the victims was pronounced dead at the scene while another died in hospital. The third victim was treated for non-life threatening injuries.
“In the midst of his ranting and raving, some people approached him and appeared to try to intervene with his behavior and some of the people that he was yelling at,” Sgt Simpson told The Oregonian. “They were attacked viciously.”
Witness Evelin Hernandez said the man had called Muslim people “criminals” and had said: “Get off the bus, and get out of the country because you don’t pay taxes here” before he launched his attack.
Christian was booked early Saturday morning on two counts of aggravated murder, two counts of second-degree intimidation (hate crime) charges, and one count each of aggravated murder and being a felon in possession of a restricted firearm, reported KOIN 6.
The Portland Police Bureau reported that the man “was on the MAX train yelling various remarks that would be best characterized as hate speech toward a variety of ethnicities and religions. At least two of the victims attempted to intervene with the suspect and calm him down. The suspect attacked the men, stabbing three, before leaving the train.”
A GoFundMe page started to help the victim’s familieshas already raised over $120,000 as of May 27 at 9:00 pm.
“Two men were killed today because they stood up for two Muslim women who were being harassed on Tri-Met by a racist. Another was injured,” the page reads. “They are heroes, yet their families are not only going to be faced with the pain of losing people they love, but with financial hardships from their passings.”
Taliesin Myrddin’s sister, Aurora Dachen, also posted a tribute to her late brother, describing him as her hero, and writing: ‘As I’m sure some of you may know, my dearest brother was one of the men who lost their lives on the MAX in Portland yesterday.
‘My heart feels empty from the loss of my big brother, but also from the cruel awakening that hate & judgment can cause someone to do such a thing. I am so proud to be able to call someone so brave and strong my big brother.
‘You have always and will always be my hero, Tilly. Although, you may not be here to hold and comfort me, I know you will always be apart of me. Thank you for teaching me everything you have. I will forever cherish every memory we have made these last 18 years. I will try my hardest to make you proud everyday, Til. #hateisevil’