CHICAGO — The life of a young teenage girl who was shot a killed in a park nine years ago is being remembered this weekend.
Since losing her, Hadiya Pendleton’s parents have become activists. On Saturday her parents will honor her and other victims of gun violence with a Wear Orange event at Hadiya Pendleton Park in Bronzeville.
Leading up to this week, public health officials have been sounding the alarm, warning about the toll gun violence is having on kids.
Pendleton was shot and killed in Chicago days after performing at former President Barack Obama’s second inauguration. June 2 would have been her 25th birthday.
“I had her, her dad had her for 15 years and they were an amazing 15 years,” her mother Cleopatra Cowley-Pendleton said. “I cannot not smile when I think about her because she was funny. She had so much promise that we all missed out on.”
More on Hadiya’s Foundation here.
She said she wants people to come together and have fun Saturday celebrating her daughter’s life at the Orange Day Peace Party. The parade starts at 11 a.m. at Hadiya Pendleton Park at 43rd Street and Calumet.
“I’ve been in the movement since 2013 saying something needs to happen,” she said. “I just think people need to be bold enough and have the courage to stand up to those who think a right to bear arms is more important than a right to live.”