SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — One TikTok creator is going viral for dedicating his daily runs to Ahmaud Arbery.
Ellis Harrison, a student at the University of Missouri, makes a video every day calling for justice for Arbery, an unarmed 25-year-old Black man who was fatally shot while jogging near Brunswick.
Harrison has gained over 51,000 followers on his account, with more than 2 million likes. He says he started creating the videos in May of last year as his own form of protest.
“I started it after other people were having protests,” Harrison said. “I felt a special connection to it, so I tried to do a protest in a way that I could at the time.”
Since then, his posts have gotten thousands of views each day with messages of support and encouragement.
“It gives me a lot of motivation to keep going. When I see people are supporting me, it makes it easier to keep going,” he said.
After gaining popularity on the app, Harrison donated money from his views to Miles for Justice, a fundraiser that works to fight systemic discrimination, and the Equal Justice Initiative.
“When I first started, I wasn’t getting a lot of views, but I was still going to do it anyway,” Harrison said. “Of course, I wouldn’t use it for myself because that’s not what it’s for. The best thing I could do was donate it.”
Harrison says he plans on running every day until there’s justice for Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
“That’s where the motivation comes from,” Harrison said. “We’ve seen in the past that the things that seem like clear-cut cases where people should be convicted don’t normally happen all the time.”
“I really feel for his family. Most of the time when I run, I think about how they feel,” he added. “That’s how I got started, thinking about how my mom would feel if it happened to me.”