Due to the rising COVID-19 cases and Humboldt County moving into purple tier, Charmaine Lawson has postponed the 4th Annual David Josiah Lawson Coat drive. It was originally scheduled for Dec. 12, but it will be held at a later date that is yet to be announced.
The coat drive was started in memory of Humboldt State University student, David Josiah Lawson, who was killed at an off-campus party on April 15, 2017. His mother, Charmaine, initiated the project and also made the difficult decision to postpone it.
“Everyone’s safety is important and it’s better for the community and myself to stay at home and follow the guidelines,” Charmaine said. “I still have items such as blankets, coats, socks, and gift cards to give to the community — especially Humboldt State students and College of the Redwoods students who are in need. I still want to be able to give back but I will just have to do it at a later time when it is safe.”
The current global pandemic has put many Justice for Josiah Campaign events on pause but the support and the fight for justice continues. Charmaine hasn’t been able to travel very much from Los Angeles to Humboldt since the pandemic.
“COVID has impacted the ability to keep pushing for justice for DJ, but there are so many wonderful people in Humboldt who have continued to show support and hold it down,” Charmaine said. “I’m still fighting and I am not going to give up until justice is served for my son.”
Charmaine Lawson said that about three months after her son was murdered, she was on the Arcata Plaza and was approached by a homeless elderly gentleman who said he knew who Josiah Lawson was.
The man told her that he saw her son walking by with a box of pizza and he asked DJ if he could have a slice. DJ didn’t hesitate and just told the man to get as much as he needed.
“This is an important event and that is why we are postponing it. This coat drive means so much to me because it honors my son DJ’s memory. And it allowed me to give back to those who were in need. DJ was a giver, and I want to follow in his footsteps and give back.
The Justice for Josiah campaign is still accepting donations on the GoFundMe account that was started by Charmaine. Donations are used to help buy gift cards for the coat drive and they also go toward legal funds. When donating, you can specify where you’d like your donations to be directed. The account can be found under “Justice for Josiah: Litigation Assistance,” or by going to the following link https://www.gofundme.com/f/justice-for-josiah-litigation-assistance
There is still a $50,000 reward for anyone who has any information that could help with this unsolved case. For more information, to learn how to help or to get involved, visit the Facebook page “Justice For David Josiah Lawson.”