High heels start a conversation about sexual assault

The Hop's co-owner, Greg Garrison, wears high heels in support of Our Voice's Walk a Mile event (Event held on Saturday May 7) on May 3, 2016. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

ASHEVILLE, N.C. -- This weekend is Our Voice's "Walk A Mile Asheville" event. It is a march against rape, sexual assault, and gender violence, and one of the event's biggest supports is walking the walk.

"You want to go with unicorn poop, or Birthday cake," Greg Garrison asked a young kid getting ice cream.

That's a typical ice cream shop conversation. The Hop's co-owner, Greg Garrison, wants to have a different conversation.

"Rape and sexual gender violence are not easy things for people to talk about," he said.

So, Tuesday night he was wearing high heels. They're a conversation starter.

"Fantastic," exclaimed one customer.

"Oh my god," said another.

He was wearing them for many people. Barbie Angell is one of the people. Recently, she shared what she's been through.

"Yes, I was molested as a child. Yes, I was raped in college. Yes, I was raped repeatedly by an abusive boyfriend. Yes, I still get harassed and victim blamed," Angell said.

She also wants to have this conversation.

"I was like, 'I need to do this for her, for me, for whoever's next, for the girl next weekend'," said Angell.

For the sixth year, Greg will run in heels. This year, he also helped plan the event.

"This needs to be out there for people, for other survivors, for other people who want to find a way to help," Garrison said.

"Thank you for all of your, for being so open and being public about all this," Garrison told Angell.

She appreciates the conversation less traveled.

Walk A Mile starts Saturday at 10 a.m.

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