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Eurydice Dixon's legacy: how her Facebook page will live on in the fight and right for women to be safe

So far in 2018, 29 young women have lost their lives through a violent death. We're in week 25 of 2018. That's more than one woman a week.

By: Holly Royce

Like so many who are unexpectedly taken from this world, Eurydice Dixon did not get a chance to determine the legacy she left in the broader world.

The 22-year-old comedian was walking home from the train station after a gig and then tragically, she was stalked, raped and murdered. Her body was then dumped in Princes Park at North Carlton, just 900 metres from her home, to be found by a passer-by.

19-year-old Jaymes Todd turned himself in for the rape and murder of Eurydice the next day. It's been reported that James suffers with Autism Spectrum Disorder, something his lawyer said "makes him socially regressive", though there has been no public comment on his condition.

His trial is currently ongoing and will resume in October.

Public outcry following Eurydice Dixon's death

The immediate and expected reaction from police was to warn the public to be vigilant, and "that people need to be aware of their own personal security and just be mindful of their surroundings".

An understandable reaction maybe - but this public warning has triggered global outrage because rather than telling women yet again that THEY (we) need to be more careful, it's time to change the dialogue around rape culture. Through education and holding perpetrators accountable for their actions, we need to create a culture where women can feel safe.

From this anger and outrage, the Facebook pages of Eurydice Dixon AND Jaymes Todd have become a tragic symbol of the need for a cultural revolution. Searches for both Facebook pages have skyrocketed this week. And social media has become the campaign HQ for women - and men - fed up with not feeling safe.

Eurydice Dixon's Facebook page

Eurydice Dixon's Facebook profile picture.

Eurydice didn't choose to become the face of a cultural revolution, but the story of her horrific death and the circumstances leading up to it have placed her front and centre. By all accounts, this fierce, smart and loving woman would have had no objections to such a role.

Speaking to The Australian, her mentor comedian Kieran Butler praised Eurydice for challenging the status quo. Even from a young age, she would tackle subjects ono one was talking about.

"She was prolific and often workshopped new ideas on stage. She could think laterally like a lawyer and see things from both sides."

"She was a feminist but she could flip feminism on its head and be critical of it, too. That's what made her different."

You can't help but align yourself with people who are on a national (or international) stage, and are similar to you. When that person has lost their life through an act as seemingly ordinary as simply walking home, you feel the rage, grief and fear deeply.

And so Eurydice's social media presence continues to act in our own stories.

Eurydice Dixon's memorial

Candlelight vigil for Eurydice Dixon in Princess Park

Tonight, Monday, June 18th, there will be a candlelight vigil held for Eurydice Dixon at Princess Park. The vigil will start at 5:30 pm, lights out from 6 pm and run until 7:30 pm. Thousands are expected to attend the service in Melbourne, with other cities around Australia hosting their own vigils for the murdered woman.

Organisers of tonight's vigil spoke to Sunrise this morning, revealing they were 'distraught' after a makeshift memorial for the 22-year-old was, in an unbelievable act, vandalised.

Firefighters did their best to remove any markings as quickly as possible. Police are currently searching for the vandals.

Megan Bridger-Darling, a vigil organiser, told ABC News that the event was about providing a place for the community to come together offline.

"It's a way of saying this is our park, and we feel safe here, this is our soccer pitch … this is our area," she said.

"That is a beautiful way of showing just how much one person's life can ripple out and echo around the country."
"And you can't take that away through fear."

Eurydice Dixon

One woman a week is being killed

Sadly, it's taken a tragedy to reignite the conversation around violence against women - and it's a conversation we need to continue having.

So far in 2018, 29 young women have lost their lives due to violent deaths. That's more than one woman a week.

Statistically, women are most likely to meet a violent end at home at the hands of a partner. On average in Australia, one woman a week is killed by a current or former partner.

We need to work together to create safe spaces for both men and women, at home and in public.

But what can I do?

Australian Women Against Violence Alliance (AWAVA) ensure that women's voices are heard by Government. They have put together a list of 10 steps you can take to help end violence against women.
From speaking up to caring for yourself - these small actions all of us can take to help make a long lasting change.

For all the Eurydice's out there.