VMAs: Mom of Charlottesville Victim Heather Heyer Makes Emotional Plea

Susan Bro, mother of Charlottesville victim Heather Heyer, attended the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, presenting the Best Fight Against the System award in honor of her late daughter.

Heyer was killed on Aug. 12 when a man drove his car into a crowd of demonstrators who were peacefully protesting a “Unite the Right” march, during which white nationalists and neo-Nazis roamed the streets of Charlottesville chanting “White Lives Matter.”

“Only 15 days ago, my daughter Heather was killed as she protested racism,” Bro began. “I miss her, but I know she’s here tonight. I’ve been deeply moved to see people across the world, the whole world, find inspiration in her courage.”

Bro then announced the Heather Heyer Foundation, “a non-profit organization that will provide scholarships to help more people join Heather’s fight against hatred.” She urged viewers to “please visit our website to [help] me make Heather’s death count. I want people to know that Heather never marched alone. She was always joined by people from every race and every background in this country.

“In that spirit,” she announced, “MTV has decided to honor all six nominees for Best Fight Against the System.” They included Logic ft. Damian Lemar Hudson (for “Black SpiderMan”), The Hamilton Mixtape (for “Immigrants (We Get the Job Done)”), Big Sean (for “Light”), Alessia Cara (for “Scars To Your Beautiful”), Taboo ft. Shailene Woodley (for “Stand Up / Stand N Rock #NoDAPL”) and John Legend (for “Surefire”).

Bro was formally introduced by an unlikely guest: Reverend Robert Lee IV, a descendant of Confederate Civil War General Robert Lee, whose statue was at the center of the violence in Charlottesville.

“We have made my ancestor an idol of white supremacy, racism and hate,” he said. “As a pastor, it is my moral duty to speak out against racism: America’s original sin. Today, I call on all of us with privilege and power to answer God’s call to confront racism and white supremacy head on. We can find inspiration in the Black Lives Matter movement, the women who marched in the Women’s March back in January, and especially Heather Heyer, who died fighting for her beliefs in Charlottesville.”

Watch video of the segment above.