March against violence held to remember victims of gun violence
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Mamas Against Violence held their annual march against violence in South Bend on Saturday. Organizers hope to not only stop gun violence in their neighborhoods but also help families cope with tragedy.
The peace walk started at Muessel Grove Park and ended at Faith Apostolic Church in South Bend around 10 a.m. on Saturday.
Several members of the Clay High School band honored 18-year-old Nathan Hall who was shot and killed while riding his bike in April. Hall would have graduated from high school on Friday.
Mama's Against Violence has been helping the Hall family through this tragedy.
Bobbie Woods said, "What I told her is I wish I could take away your pain, but I can't."
The MAV president lost a son in 2003 to gun violence, and today she uses her experience to help other mothers in the community cope with losing a child.
Dionne Wade said, “Her son is gone, my son is gone, Nathan Hall is gone.
Wade shared her story to those participating in the walk. She said that in the past few years her attitude has changed completely after she joined the peace initiative.
"Bobbie made the statement that my son is dead. I’m out here trying to save theirs. That’s what people don’t understand.”
Deputy Mayor Mark Neal also participated in the walk and he encouraged the community to step up and mentor children who don't have parental guidance at home.
Neal said, “It does take a village to raise children. And I think we can work together to make better things happen and have a better future for our community and for our kids.”
The Chief of Police of the South Bend Police Department also participated in the walk. He said every homicide has a narrative, and it's up to the community to prevent acts of violence from happening.
Ron Teachman said, “It’s about getting them involved in prevention and intervention before we get involved in prosecution. We prefer not to be locking anyone up, but we have to do our job after a crime has been committed.”