Images (top to bottom): Julio Rivera on the cover of Gay City News; Rodney Velazquez; Gwen Araujo; Sylvia Guerrero holding her daughter Gwen's photo; LaTona Gunn; Sakia Gunn on the cover of Gay City News; Rashawn Brazell; Desire Brazell at adresses media at a vigil in honor of Rashawn; Dwan Prince's mom Valerie Prinez.
Though not by any means a comprehensive listing of other under-reported attacks and murders of LGBT folks, these are the ones that I carry in my heart. Most striking is that in most of these cases, the families of the victims, and particularly their mothers, have been moved to take action on behalf of their sons and daughters. Just like Eddie Garzon’s mother, Leonor, these women have moved earth and heaven to find justice. Leonor Garzon, LaTona Gunn, Sylvia Guerrero, Valerie Prinez are all unsung heroes. And, even though I helped to organize a community meeting with the local police precinct and the hate crimes unit in the
Julio Rivera was killed in July of 1990. His murder galvanized the
Gwen Araujo was killed on
15 year old Sakia Gunn, died on
In February of 2005, parts of 19-year old Rashawn Brazell’s body were found in plastic garbage bags at different sites in Brooklyn. As horrific as the crime was, his mother, Desire Brazell, a social worker, has been tireless in her search for justice. The New York City Anti-Violence Project has accused the NYPD of dragging its feet in this case and the murder has been kept in people's mind by Gay City News and a myriad of blogs and bloggers out there who refuse to let the crime fall from the city's consciousness. Photos I took at a vigil in memory of Rashawn that took place on March 25 in which Ms. Brazell addressed the crowd and media can be seen here.
Simply, whether hate crimes or not, they all deserve justice...
This is the last in a series of posts, to read previous posts go to:
- Part 1: The Attack
- Part 2: COLEGA and Eddie Garzon
- Part 3: So what is, exactly, is a 'hate crime'? (and a prayer)
- Part 4: Eddie Garzon passes on
- Part 5: The Vigil
- Part 6: A Newsday Editorial
- Part 7: A parade of angels