As the number of shootings grows in Cincinnati, community members have joined together in a call to stop the violence.
They are doing so both on the streets and in a forum.
If the sound of motorcycles didn’t catch people’s attention, the funeral-like procession probably did.
“A life is a life, and you only have it once, and when it’s gone, it’s extinguished,” Jon Patterson said.
Members of motorcycle groups, funeral homes, city and county officials and community activists lined up for the second “Ride for Peace” this year, pushing for an end to gun violence in the Queen City.
Lisa Gould’s son was murdered in 2011.
His case is unsolved.
“Being able to come out to this type of stuff really heals my soul, and it does give me, you know, the strength and the determination, with the Lord’s help, to press on,” she said.
Mitch Morris, with Cincinnati Works, said the procession through numerous neighborhoods makes a powerful statement.
“Enough is enough. Please come out and join us. Can’t say nothing good? Don’t say nothing at all,” Morris said.
It was just a night earlier that participants at a Candlelight Chain of Peace in Avondale asked for 24 hours of nonviolence.
Peace didn’t last but a few hours before a shooting in Price Hill and another in Over-The-Rhine.
The ride is an attempt to change minds and save lives.
“We bring them all together and show, like, we’re all cool. We’re all family. We ride together. We’ve got each other’s back,” Brandyn Ward said.
Organizers hope they can motivate people to speak out to solve cases, bring closure, and end a cycle of violence.
“It may not be at your community today, but it’s definitely on it’s way to your community tomorrow,” Ennis Tait said.
Organizers said they are asking for a ceasefire across our communities.
They said so far this year, there have been more than 45 funeral processions for victims of gun violence.
The “Ride for Peace” finished with a panel discussion.
People from various government agencies and community activists talked about challenges our city faces right now and how they can inspire people to get involved.