rear of the athletic field to walk the streets following the lead of
Aguirre's parents, Raul and Leticia.
Participants all had different reasons for being there.
"We're trying to stop the violence so new students won't be scared to
come to our school," said Hoover student Ned Sayaf, 15 1/2. "Young people
are going to make peace happen."
Safety was a recurring theme with other walkers.
Caryn Sassmita, a La Crescenta resident and Hoover class of '79
graduate, wanted her 7 1/2-year-old daughter Alexa to see her school and
understand what had happened. Sassmita who has a circle of multicultural
friends, wants a world where her daughter can "grow up safe."
Others in the walk said they came so they could channel their emotions
in a positive way.
Glendale resident and lawyer Betty Jamgoychian's reaction to hearing
about Aguirre's death was to make calls to friends discussing the
possibility of a walk. She later met with officials at Hoover.
"Something needed to be done to put energy into the right place," she
The idea was passed along to other organizers. Hoover alumni Jaime
Reinoso, Jennifer Martinez and Gisselle Villa organized the event in
their spare time as a way to unite the community against violence after
the shooting death of Hoover senior Aguirre. Flyers that were distributed
for the march described an event where the community could express how it
wants to keep violence out of Glendale.
"They didn't have situations like this when I was at Hoover," said
David Jones, a 1984 graduate. "But we can't point a finger at the young."
He said the walk was a way for him to put his thoughts and feelings
about the violence into action.
Shouts of "Peace now" through the streets drew only a handful of
spectators from their homes.
Once the walkers returned to the athletic field, two good friends,
Toll Middle School students Stephanie Tirado, 12, and Carolina Aguirre,
12, sat eating refreshments.
"I came to help her. She needs time with friends so she won't feel
sad," Stephanie said.