PORTLAND, OR—The mysterious “Candlelight Vigilante,” a rogue mourner known for appearing alone in parks and town squares, lighting a single candle, and commemorating loss on his own terms, made his first public statement Tuesday night, speaking to reporters from a pay phone. “Sometimes, when the system fails to grieve properly, a man has to take mourning into his own hands,” said the notorious one-man memorializer, a stoic gravitas entering his voice as he broke a long-held moment of silence. “I commemorate where others don’t. If there’s a church, synagogue, or hospital parking lot in need of a public outpouring of respectful concern, I’ll be there. Nobody—not a community organizer or local pastor—tells me when to pay solemn tribute.” At press time, witnesses reported the Candlelight Vigilante had appeared suddenly along the shoulder of a highway, removed an elaborate floral display from a military duffel, and placed it along the roadside before quickly disappearing back into the shadows.
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