The friends of a non-binary transgender person made a powerful video as a tribute to celebrate their life.
Milo Mazurkiewicz took their own life on 6 May by jumping off a bridge in Warsaw, Poland.
To pay tribute to their friend, LGBTI people gathered on Friday (24 May) to unfurl a rainbow flag over the bridge. They also observed a minute of silence.
But organizers of the event also wanted to memorialize their friend on a global scale, with a touching video.
‘Millions of people around the world suffer from homophobia, biphobia and transphobia,’ the video states. ‘Thousands of LGBT people in Poland have suicidal thoughts.’
The video then added: ‘We decided to commemorate her.’
Bartosz Staszewski is an activist from Polish group Proud and Furious.
‘I think it is important to show that we will resist,’ he told Gay Star News. ‘And stay strong even if it is hard.’
Julia Maciocha, fellow organizer of Friday’s event, then said: ‘Trans lives matter and therefore we made this event.
‘In this video, you find everything, it is so touching.
‘It’s not depression that killed her, its our country,’ Julia said.
Trigger warning: Suicide
‘I’m fed up,’ Mazurkiewicz wrote in a 2 May Facebook post: ‘I’m fed up being treated like a piece of shit.’
They then added: ‘I’m fed up with people (psychologists, doctors, therapists) telling me I can’t be who I am because I don’t look like that.
‘Treating me as if it was all in my head and telling me I need papers proving it.
‘Caring more about how I dress than how I feel.
‘Telling me that it’s good that my chosen name is neutral-sounding, that it’s good my body is not extremely feminine, that’s it’s good I haven’t come out at work (yet).
‘Telling me that maybe I should stop being (trying to be) myself and wait until other doctors and therapists decide I can.
‘I’m fed up of all of that.
‘Sometimes it makes me fight even more, sometimes it makes me want to end it all and stop my life right here.
‘Sometimes it’s just makes me want to cry,’ they wrote.
They then followed up this Facebook post with another one on 6 May: ‘I’m sorry.’ This is the same day they took their own life.
Attackers disrupt tribute
About 15 minutes into the tribute on Friday night, a man ran up to the flag along the bicycle track and tried to tear it down.
In that exact moment, a drone was recording the incident unfold. It zoomed in on the attacker fighting with the activists, as he manages to rip the purple stripe off the rainbow flag.
He then exchanges heated words with the activists, before violently kicking and assaulting them and then running away.
The man screamed: ‘Get out of Poland,’ according to Staszewski.
Wczoraj wieczorem wywiesiliśmy tęczową flagę w Warszawie -w hołdzie samobójczej śmierci Milo. Cztery osoby pobite, w tym fotoreporter. Poszarpane dziewczyny na moście. Sprawca z drugiego filmika nadal niezidentyfikowany. Czy @jbrudzinski już napisał twitta potępiający atak? pic.twitter.com/VIlxl779tw
— Bart Staszewski 🏳️🌈 (@BartStaszewski) May 25, 2019
The Proud and Furious activist then exclusively told Gay Star News that at the same time as the attack on the cyclists bridge, there was also another attack with the main group on the above bridge.
Those two groups were very different groups,’ Staszewski said. ‘It just shows that in one hour, we were attacked by two different groups of homophobic people, who were not afraid to approach us.’
One of the attacker’s targeted the group’s photographer, punching him in the face.
Luckily, there were no serious injuries.