Little Library outside Mother Teresa Catholic School dedicated to Xóchitl Rivera
On Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023 at 4:30 p.m., Mother Teresa Catholic school will be honouring the memory of Xóchitl Rivera by dedicating a “Little Library” in front of the school to their beloved student, classmate, and friend.
It has been nearly one year since Xóchitl died suddenly after being struck by a vehicle on Lancaster Drive as she left school to walk home on Monday, Jan. 31, 2022.
“Students, families, staff, and members of our community are invited to gather at the Little Library to come together to remember Xóchitl,” Mother Teresa administration wrote in a statement.
Xóchitl’s mom, Denisse Rivera, said that a Little Library is the perfect tribute to her daughter’s life. “She absolutely loved books, and had been reading since kindergarten. Just weeks before her death, she had grabbed a book in Spanish and just sat beside me and started to read it. She was so determined to be fluent in both languages.”
“When they told me of their plan to do the Little Library, I felt it was so fitting, because ‘that’s just so Xóchitl’,” Rivera added.
Mother Teresa Catholic School also welcomed the community to light up their homes by displaying hearts and lights in their windows, as many in the city did a year ago after Xóchitl’s death. “We invite you to take part in the Lights and Hearts display between January 25th and February 1st,” the school encouraged. The City of Kingston will also be lighting up City Hall and Springer Market Square in memory of Xóchitl on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2023, to mark the anniversary of Xóchitl’s death.
Rivera reminisced about how much Xóchitl loved celebrations and light-displays. “Whenever there was a special display downtown, she made [our family] get down to take pictures, because she loved lights so much!”
Whether it’s by attending the dedication, illuminating dark winter evenings with windows full of hearts, or visiting downtown Kingston on Tuesday to see the lights in Xóchitl’s honour, “[w]e hope that you can join us as we remember Xóchitl and the light she brought to our community,” Mother Teresa administration said.
And of course, the community can continue to remember Xóchitl as they put the Little Library at 1044 Lancaster Drive to good use. “I hope that every time someone borrows or leaves a book, they think of the amazing, giving, and lovely girl she was,” said Rivera. “Always lending a hand and striving to make everyone’s day a little brighter. By just looking at her and her smile, people couldn’t help but smile themselves.”