Fresno families remember loved ones killed in crashes for World Day of Remembrance

Vince Ybarra Image
Sunday, November 19, 2023
Fresno families remember loved ones killed in crashes for World Day of Remembrance
Shoes lined the Fresno City Hall fountain Sunday as several people gathered outside to remember road traffic victims for World Day of Rememberance.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Shoes line the Fresno City Hall fountain as several people gathered outside to remember road traffic victims. Dozens of people gathered to honor and remember pedestrians and cyclists who lost their lives while on the road. Something activists say is preventable.

"What we're talking about is people's driving behaviors and it needs to change because speed is the number one cause of death among pedestrians and cyclists. In fact, here in the City of Fresno 90 percent of all pedestrians who have been killed involve a driver who struck them going 40 and faster," said Joe Martinez.

He works with an organization called Family for Safe Streets.

He lost his 21-year-old son Paul when he was hit and killed by a car in 2013. And even though it's been 10 years, he still grieves his son's death.

"Having to bury your child is unnatural. And it should never be that way, and so I've been able to channel my energy purpose," said Martinez.

Fresno County resident Tracey Dunn attended the event to remember her friend, Adela Santana. In October 2022, Adela was cycling on a road when she was hit and killed by a driver.

"She was one of the most amazing people I've ever met in my life. If you ever had the honor of meeting Adela, you would know why I say that- she was an incredible person," said Dunn.

She just discovered the person who hit and killed Adela will be facing minimal charges.

Both Dun and Martinez said more needs to be done to protect pedestrians and cyclists.

"This entire council and Mayor have been committed to what you call Multimodal Transportation. So, cars can use the road but it's also safe for pedestrians and bicyclists. So, we share the road together but in a way that's safe so no one gets hit," said Fresno Councilmember, Mike Karbassi.

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