Dozens walk to take a stand against violence - NBC12 - Richmond, VA News

Dozens walk to take a stand against violence

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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -

After roughly two dozen homicides in Richmond this year, people say enough is enough. Many are stepping up to prevent more tragedies. Dozens of people participated in Saturday's "Faith Walk" in the southside. 

Mothers, fathers, siblings and friends of loved ones who've been murdered are taking a stand against this unnecessary violence.   

"Stop. Stop. This is not having fun. This is not a game," said Loretta Byrd. 

Byrd's youngest son was killed and police still haven't arrested a suspect.  

"To lose a loved one - it is heart-breaking," said Markeita Boyd. She's an organizer who also lost loved ones to violence. "We are supposed to be burying our parents. Our parents are not supposed to be burying our children." 

That's the case with many parents here. Andrea Jones' 24-year-old son was shot back in 2007. His case has since gone cold. The pain in her eyes shows the hurt never goes away.  

"I'm tired of it," Jones noted. "I have grand kids and I don't want this for my grand kids. I'm just tired of the crime. We should be able to walk where we want to walk, sit where we want to sit, go where we want to go without being robbed or killed." 

Jones along with dozens of others walked from the Manchester Courthouse to Southside Plaza. Many wore pictures of their loved ones on T-Shirts and pins. 

It's an effort Dwayne Hill felt moved to organize after too many young friends were murdered. He's also a father of a 22-year-old son. 

"We as people - as African America people - we are making a decision today we are joining together in unity to bring more love and more piece to our neighborhood," Hill commented. "We want to upgrade and change what we're seeing here in our city." 

Most everyone here says it's all in God's hands. They hope this walk will move them one step closer to reduce violent crimes. Organizers are planning other activities for family members who have lost loved ones. If you'd like to become involved call Evangelist Markeita Boyd at: (804) - 908-2698.

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