Pasadena Star-News – PEACE WALK


Community members march for peace in Pasadena
By Brian Day, Staff Writer
Posted: 03/21/2010 12:18:59 AM PDT

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Peace Walk
PASADENA – People of all ages and backgrounds took to the streets of Pasadena on Saturday to march in support of peace and unity.

About 75 marchers carried signs and chanted slogans as they walked from the Villa Parke Community Center to Robinson Park.

“What do we want? Peace! When do we want it? Now!” the crowd shouted.

The event was organized by the community organization El Centro De Accion Social Inc. and the group’s executive director, Randy Ertll.

The group began holding a peace march in Pasadena following their event to honor Cesar Chavez four years ago in response to a growing number of homicides in the city, Ertll said.

Both individuals and other community organizations joined in the demonstration Saturday.

Some community members said Saturday they were left uneasy by the March 7 shooting death of 17-year-old Pasadena resident Abraham Rodriguez on Tremont Street, just east of Fair Oaks Avenue. No arrests have been made in the case, the first homicide reported in Pasadena this year.

Carmen Fregoe, 39, of Pasadena said she didn’t want to see another homicide in her city.

“I’m sick and tired of hearing about a kid dying in the street,” she said. “Do not be afraid to walk these streets.”

Dan Mack, 49, of Monrovia said he felt obligated to do what he can to create a safe community for children.

“I have children of my own,” he said, “and I want them to grow up safe, so I’m trying to stop the madness now.”
Mack added he believed that events such as the peace march set a good example for impressionable youths.

“Either we set an example, or someone else will,” he said.

Rebecca Pratt, 40, of Pasadena marched with her 3-month-old daughter, Zariyah, in a stroller.

“This is awesome,” she said of the march. “There’s a good diversity out here.”

Julie Guerrero, 16, of Pasadena said she is a teen mom and doesn’t want her son to grow up with violence.

“We need peace in Pasadena,” she said. “I want to see change in the streets. I don’t want my son being brought down by these negative people.”

Ertll said the goal of the march was to keep people focused on fighting violence.

“We shouldn’t come together only in times of crisis,” he said. “We need to work for peace every day.”

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