SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WGGB) –People at Springfield’s Magazine Park wore T-shirts and carried poster boards plastered with the images of lost loved ones. Their memory was at the forefront today during the March Against Violence.
Jessica Negron organized the march, and knows the feeling all too well. She lost her 23-year-old son, Darin, last year in a robbery homicide. “Getting that knock on your door, and when I saw the police, as soon as I saw them I started shaking. I was like, please tell me my son is arrested and not dead. You already know. You go into shock and numb” Negron shared.
She says her son inspired her to march through a dream. “Every night I would go to sleep, I would just see myself just marching, because I do have a big mouth, and I know a lot of people I want to reach out to the mothers that are going through the same thing I have that lost a son to violence. Any type of violence; murder, suicide, domestic” she said.
Elizabeth Roman was already putting together a march against domestic violence, when she met Jessica and decided to combine the two events. “I was in a domestic violence situation. I was married for 7 years, and it began to escalate from insults to hitting, then to beatings, up to the point where he stabbed me. I just wanted to bring out an awareness of the community and how we can become involved and try to help those victims”.
The march also brought out Ezell Gonzalez. His brother Antonio Gonzalez was shot just 2 weeks ago in front of his home on Bay Street. “Now his kids, I have to raise for me and for him. His life I have to carry his life” he said.
Not only are the adults concerned, the younger generations say they are fed up with the violence in Springfield. “I think it’s stupid just to carry a gun. It doesn’t make you any smarter. If you do want to carry something, carry books” Antonio’s younger brother, Martavius Coleman stated. “My brother, he was shot two days after my birthday. Listen to us. We have a message. This needs to stop. We all live here. We can all change this. If we all do this together” voiced Annabeth Aguayo.
If the community continues to pull together, Roman is hopeful for the future. “Anybody can make it. If I made it, they can make it”.