A new national feature is giving a voice to some Rochester residents.
It's called "I Remember Nicole" and it's produced and directed by a Rochester native now living and working in Los Angeles.
The video, gaining national attention, is a call to action during Domestic Violence Awareness Month with a goal to empower victims and survivors of domestic violence.
Dee Brescia of Greece is in the video.
"I’m in Honeoye Falls and I’m holding a sign, ‘Believe in Yourself,’ and everybody, no matter your age, at some point in your life you really had to believe in yourself," Brescia said. "I think every woman can relate to domestic violence."
The video honors the life and legacy of Nicole Brown Simpson, ex-wife of O.J. Simpson, murdered in June 1994 along with friend Ron Goldman. O.J. Simpson was charged with the crimes and later acquitted during the so-called trial of the century.
The video features women from Los Angeles and the west coast along with Rochester women and locations including Durand Eastman, Portland Avenue, The Highland Park Diner and a walk for Rochester’s Willow Domestic Violence Center.
The video was co-directed by award-winning Rochester native Renee Sotile along with director Mary Jo Godges.
Harleigh Jerzak, 17, of Webster also features in the video. The high school student believes the video helped to inspire her friend to break away from a bad situation.
“Her boyfriend was hitting her, pushing her,” Harleigh said. She wasn’t even alive yet when Nicole Brown Simpson was killed, but her story resonates with the teenager.
"Nicole was very brave and I think every woman is brave,” she said. “But she was in a situation where she couldn’t really help herself that much. I think that everyone is connected to Nicole somehow."
Sotile and Godges created the video with the blessing of the Brown family.
“We were so moved,” said Tanya Brown, Nicole’s sister. "She’s an icon and people relate to her whether you’re a victim or not, a survivor or not, it’s just everybody relates to her."
The “I Remember Nicole” movement stretches from Los Angeles to Rochester. It remembers victims of domestic violence and recognizes those who are currently in unsafe situations while holding up survivors.
"If you are a Nicole, there’s help for you. If you are an OJ, there’s help for you," Brown said.
In Rochester, call 585-222-SAFE (7233) or the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 1-800-799-SAFE.