Coming off a particularly deadly May here in Chicago, National Gun Violence Awareness Day couldn't have come at a better time.
It’s also known as National Wear Orange Day, started by friends of Hadiya Pendleton after the teen was shot and killed after performing at Obama’s second inauguration. Today would have marked Hadiya’s nineteenth birthday. She was 15 when she was killed.
In its second year, the Wear Orange movement has since gone national. Its organizers chose orange because it’s the color hunters wear so they can stay safe. Groups around the country are wearing orange and organizing to promote antiviolence efforts.
Today at Harold Washington Playlot Park, the day was commemorated with several musical and spoken word performances, as well as words from Hadiya’s parents and other parents and families who lost children to gun violence.
Landmarks across the country will be bathed in orange lights tonight, including some right here in Hadiya’s hometown of Chicago.