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Several hundred people turned out on Mother’s Day for a special installment of the weekly Arlington West war memorial. The three-month-old MotherHearts organization — a group of local women dedicated to promoting peace and restoring the original anti-war sentiments of Mother’s Day — held its first official public event Sunday on the sand by Stearns Wharf. Local musicians provided entertainment and MotherHearts founders and Veterans for Peace leader Stephen Sherrill delivered speeches. Since Sunday’s event, MotherHearts’ membership has grown from eight to more than 50. Lisa Wysel — a MotherHearts cofounder — said of the impressive turnout, “We wanted to call attention to the fact that there could be other ways, beyond war, to resolve conflict. And our message was definitely heard. It was tremendous and truly gratifying.” MotherHearts also stressed the outrageous costs of the war in Iraq by providing examples of peaceful programs the $280,147,000,000 spent to date could have otherwise funded; according to MotherHearts literature, this sum could have financed global anti-hunger programs for 11 years or provided every child in the world with basic immunizations for the next 92 years. MotherHearts plans to continue its involvement with Arlington West and “guarantees” future public proclamations of peace. — Ethan Stewart

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