WASCO — Candlelight flickers over 70 faces, all gathered to pay homage to the fallen lieutenant, and his mother and sons were killed in a shooting on Sunday.
Tuesday night began with a call from Rev. Frank Sanchez. He urged the individual to find comfort in God in hardship and tragedy.
In his speeches in both Spanish and English, Sanchez said that the affected family was not alone — large numbers of vigilant groups proved that the community was sad together.
Alex Garcia, Mayor of Wasco, said the pain elicited from the death of his family was felt throughout the city’s close community. Mother Viviana Luis Ramirez and sons Jose Manuel Ramirez III (24 years old) and Angel Ramirez (17 years old) were killed as victims of domestic violence.
“Our entire Khan community is now hurt,” Garcia said. “It sends ripples to our entire community, beyond the limits of every neighborhood, every classroom, and our city.”
Garcia also said that there must be resources for families experiencing domestic violence.
“Domestic violence doesn’t know the zip code,” Garcia said.
Ilene Parra, head of the Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault, spoke at the event and provided the services of the group.
Noemi Ojeda, a Therapist at College Community Health Services, came to raise awareness of mental health among people experiencing trauma.
“Many people are suffering in silence,” Ogeda said. “We are working hard to break the stigma.”
College Community Health Services has a support group sign-up sheet that also provides treatment and medication.
Another speaker at the event, Kern County District Attorney Cynthia Zimmer, said she couldn’t imagine coming to a rally as a child.
“This shouldn’t happen in Wasco,” Zimmer said. “But unfortunately it is becoming more and more common.”
Zimmer expressed his condolences to the victim’s family and said domestic violence was unacceptable.
“If you are a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or child abuse, you have to say something,” Zimmer said. “I want to prevent this from happening again.”
City councilman Vincent Martinez knew of a teenager who was killed because he was on the Wasco wrestling team. Martinez said his son was part of the team and lost a friend.
Martinez also praised the courage of first responders on the scene on Sunday.
“I had a hard time finding words to comfort these young men,” Martinez said. “My heart is broken, but I am comforted by the compassion and unity that the city has shown in the darkest hours. This is a testament to the greatest strength of our city, the people.”
Martinez thanked law enforcement agencies for their brave efforts and their presence in the guard post. Members of the Kern County Sheriff’s Office are now showing solidarity.
Firefighter Mike Lynch came to honor Deputy Philip Campus.
“It’s really tragic,” Lynch said. “We need to help sheriffs and lawmakers.”
Jordan Davis, who lives in Delano, is now paying homage.
“It really hurt me to see this happening in our community,” Davis said. “What I can do is show my support for what he is doing for us.”
Garcia said she was grateful for solidarity from a wide range of societies.
“We are a small town with a big heart,” Garcia said. “I love wrapping their arms around our community.”
Wasco community holds vigil for victims of mass shooting | News Source link Wasco community holds vigil for victims of mass shooting | News