First Lady Michelle Obama will attend the funeral for a Chicago teen who was shot and killed last month.
Hidaya Pendleton will be laid to rest Saturday and The White House confirmed today that Michelle Obama will be at the Greater Harvest Baptist Church.
Pendleton’s tragic death has captured the attention of the nation. The 15-year-old was shot and killed just one week after visiting Washington DC for the President’s inauguration. Since her murder, the honor student and band majorette from King Prep became a symbol for gun violence in America.
The First Lady will attend Pendleton’s funeral along with White House senior advisor Valerie Jarrett and Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Today, Chicago police met with the secret service to plan for their arrival.
At King Prep, their presence at the funeral sends a clear message to the students.
“She went to the White House to see them, now the White House is coming to see her,” said Rev Jesse Jackson who told Pendleton’s classmates that they have the power to impact this high profile case and save lives down the road. He wants students to do what’s difficult, start talking.
So much attention focused on Pendleton’s death raised concerns about how to accommodate the growing crowds for the girl’s funeral. Greater Harvest Missionary Baptist Church can seat 1300 Saturday. Organizers suspect some will be turned away once the church is filled.