With the murders of two teenagers in East Boston last month still fresh in everyone’s mind, East Boston’s elected officials joined the Boston Police Department’s top brass to hold a ‘Walk for Peace:’ in the neighborhood last week.
Last Thursday, Commissioner William Evans was joined by City Councilor Sal LaMattina and Rep. Adrian Madaro as well as District 7 Captain Kelley McCormick and several dozen high ranking BPD officials and officers to walk through the neighborhood.
The walk began at the Most Holy Redeemer Church and headed through Maverick Landing, Maverick Square and down Meridian Street. As the walk progressed some residents joined in. From there police made their way to Central Square and stopped and chatted with citizens and business owners along the way.
“When the top brass of the Boston Police Department come to our neighborhood for an hour and a half to walk for peace it sends a strong message to residents that their concerns are heard and that the police take those concerns seriously,” said Madaro. “The Peace Walk also served as a unifying message that the safety and security of East Boston is a top priority and that we all play a role in keeping our community safe.”
After traveling through Central Square the walk headed up Meridian Street to Trenton and paused for prayer at the site of 15-year-old Irvin Depazm murder in September.
“It’s a great way for our neighborhood to come together as one to show residents that we are united against violence,” said LaMattina. “These walks have been happening all across the city and I’d like to commend the Mayor and Police Commissioner Evans, Captain McCormick and the rest of the officers at Station 7 for being proactive on this issue. With the recent string of crimes, it’s always a good idea to reinforce that the safety of our residents is always our number one concern. Everyone who came out had a fun time and I encourage anyone who may be interested to attend the next walk scheduled for October 29th at 4 p.m.”
Walk for Peace organizer Joe Logrippo said Commissioner Evans implemented these walks a few years ago and they started in high crime areas like Roxbury and Dorchester as a community outreach in response to violent crimes.
“We have recently expanded them into East Boston and Charlestown as they are not impervious to similar types of crime,” said Logrippo. “It’s important for residents and leaders including clergy and spiritual leadership to stand together with the police department to unify our cause for peace and prosperity for every neighborhood in our city. Alone we can only accomplish so much, but together there is no limit.”
Logrippo added that spiritually speaking or not murder is not right and should be deemed unacceptable in any realm, especially involving gang related retribution and young teenagers that have not reached their full potential or even understand the full scope of their actions toward the community.
“The clear message is for peace and prosperity and hard working residents of our city and the children that live here deserve better than this,” he said. “The police can only do so much, its incumbent upon all of us to support a safe and prosperous city.
For his part Commissioner Evans said t
he walks are, “A nice way to bring the police and community organizations together to show the community how much we care about what goes on day to day in the neighborhoods in Boston.”
We done them for six weeks in the more violent areas of Boston but saw the success and wanted to take the walks to all areas and neighborhoods in the city,” said Evans. “Since we started believe it or not violence in the city has gone done so the walks seem to have a positive calming impact on neighborhoods.”