(CBS DETROIT)– As communities throughout the country commemorate the 40th anniversary for National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald lead a dedication ceremony Wednesday, acknowledging victims within Oakland county.

“The moments I remember and are the most poignant to me were the moments I should next to a victim, sat next to a victim of crime, comforted them and truly took the time to connect,” McDonald said during a press conference.

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McDonald was joined by victim advocacy organizations and crime survivor Emily Lossia, who at just 20 years old lost her father to gun violence in 2013.

“I kept reaching for anyone or anything to help me process and understand just how deep and heavy the pain was, not only losing my dad but losing him to something so traumatic as homicide,” said Lossia.

Lossia says the burden of losing her father so suddenly weighed heavily on her family, but the support she received from local law enforcement actually encouraged her to change her college major,  as well become a victim’s rights advocate.

“An internship turned into a part-time job as a service aid which has turned into a full-time job in the traffic division, I’ve been a Farmington Hills PD for 5 years now,” Lossia said.

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Members of the Farmington Hills Police Department were also on hand as McDonald and her team presented a newly planted tree outside the prosecutors office in dedication to all victims of crime.

Lossia says she’s grateful to know the pain and grief felt by so many doesn’t go unnoticed.

“A simple thank you isn’t enough to convey how big of an impact that compassion has played in my life,” said Lossi.

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April Morton