Long Beach, News

Unity in tragedy: Long Beach mourns lives lost in mass shooting

The Long Beach community came together Wednesday to honor the lives of the three people killed in a mass shooting that occurred late Tuesday night.

“When it’s something that hits close to home it really makes you take everything more seriously,” said Jose Martinez who grew up in the area. “I’m just here to show support to the community and the families.”

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Members of the community wrote on candles and displayed them on the steps outside of the church.

Hannah Getahun / Daily Forty-Niner

Long Beach fire responded to a shooting in the Rose Park area Tuesday. Police officials said around 30 people were at a Halloween party when a man dressed in dark clothing with his face concealed shot into the backyard where the party was being held. As a result of the shooting, three people were killed and nine were injured.

At the vigil, the Long Beach Police Department officers said the suspect has not been identified and is still at large. LBPD is calling for members of the community to reach out with any security footage or photos they have.

Patricia Castillo, a Long Beach resident, said the neighborhood is also reaching out via the app Nextdoor to gain information about the incident.

“They haven’t caught him and I’m scared,” Castillo said.

The vigil was organized by the office of Councilwoman Jeanine Pearce in response to community members reaching out to them.

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Donovan Meth listens to the speakers at Wednesday night's vigil.

Perry Continente / Daily Forty-Niner

Pearce attended the vigil and emphasized the closeness of the community in order to help people heal from the “tragedy.” She said the instances like the mass shooting makes her feel powerless and scared.

“We want to make sure that the family and friends of those that lost their lives know they are not alone,” Pearce said in a speech.

Community members in attendance held candles and crowded the podium as organizations spoke in support. More than 50 people stood on the sidewalk in front of Saint Matthews Roman Catholic Church, some stood in the street because there was little to no room on the sidewalk. The people that drove by looked out their windows at the crowd.

“It’s really your worst fear to think that something like this would happen on your watch,” Rose Park Neighborhood Association President Gretchen Swanson said to the crowd.

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