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Groundbreaking ceremony: Garden of 11 Angels memorial to honor women murdered by Cleveland serial killer Anthony Sowell

The memorial will include 33 different varieties of trees and flowers, feature a free library for the community and an engraved statue with the victims' names.

CLEVELAND — The 11 women who were murdered by serial killer Anthony Sowell in Cleveland will soon be honored with a memorial known as the “Garden of 11 Angels” on Imperial Avenue at the site they lost their lives.

Groundbreaking for the memorial took place during a special ceremony Friday morning. Construction on the memorial is set to be complete later this fall.

“The memorial and park is a much-needed investment in a community that has experienced tremendous tragedy,” according to a press release from the Mt. Pleasant Ministerial Alliance.

We streamed Friday's groundbreaking ceremony live on YouTube, which you can watch in the player below:

3News previously reported that the memorial will include 33 different varieties of trees, plants and flowers. It will also feature an engraved monument featuring the names of the 11 women coupled with an excerpt of of Maya Angelou's poem Still I Rise.

Credit: Whitley/Whitley Architects, LAND Studio, Western Reserve Land Conservancy
Renderings of the Garden of 11 Angels, honoring the 11 women killed by Anthony Sowell.

They’re calling it the beginning of a new chapter for the community.

“The project seeks to uplift and bring hope to the community by transforming these eight vacant parcels into a memorial to bring closure and healing, restoring the site to a beautiful and ecologically thriving natural area that will provide the surrounding community with a space to gather, recreate, reflect and enjoy nature.”

Sowell, who was convicted and sentenced to death in the case, died in prison earlier this year at the age of 61. His crimes were discovered in October 2009 when police entered Sowell’s home where all 11 bodies were found.

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Editor's note: Video in the player above was originally published on Feb. 9, 2021.

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