‘A beautiful living tribute’: NH Community center dedicated to journalist killed in Syria

ROCHESTER, MASS. (WHDH) - Late journalist James Foley was honored in his hometown of Rochester, New Hampshire on Tuesday, where a community center has been dedicated in his name.

Foley was kidnapped and killed by ISIS militants while working as a journalist in war-torn Syria in 2014.

“Jim was always one who wanted to bring people together and see how we can help each other,” said his mother Diane Foley. “So, it’s just a beautiful living tribute to Jim.”

Mayor Caroline McCarley said the community center houses many of the city’s critical social services and is a perfect fit for a man who represented the best of Rochester.

“It’s a working-class community but it’s got an enormous volunteer spirit, “said McCarley. “And I think volunteerism is about helping people when they’re in need.”

Foley said she and her family have been carrying on James’s legacy through the Foley Foundation, which helps to protect American journalists in conflict zones.

“There are hundreds of innocent Americans who are taken hostage or unjustly detained around the world,” she said. “So, that’s kept us very busy.”

She hopes her son’s name inspires others to do everyday acts of kindness.

“Whenever someone makes the choice to care about someone else, that is what continues Jim’s legacy,” she said.

The Foleys also hold an annual road race in town to raise money for their cause.

(Copyright (c) 2021 Sunbeam Television. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)