Letter from Mark Vinson

Hello Ron,

My name is Mark Vinson.  Two of my cousins, Carolyn (Moore) Layton and Annie Moore, died at Jonestown.  I will be traveling from San Diego to attend the Jonestown memorial dedication on May 29.

Here are a few thoughts on the importance and value of this memorial:

To prevent Jonestown from being forgotten.

Independent of everything else, the people who died there deserve some recognition as human beings who sincerely tried to build a more just and compassionate society.  They and their efforts should not be forgotten.

The destructive aspect of Jim Jones and the resulting tragedy contain lessons, and for that reason should not be forgotten.  At the same time, the tragedy brought about largely by Jones’ mental imbalance should not be allowed to completely obscure or dismiss the positive factors that played a role in Jonestown.  The memorial will help preserve all of that.

Also, for myself, I’m hoping this memorial and this dedication service will provide a measure of closure regarding my two cousins who I never had the chance to know as adults.  I’m sure there are hundreds of people for whom this memorial will help provide closure and/or a point of focus regarding loved ones.

Thank you for your help and support regarding the Jonestown memorial dedication service.  Please let me know if I can be of help.

Best Regards,

Mark Vinson