A vigil was held today in the Anna Dr community in Anaheim, place where Emmanuel Diaz was shot and killed by the Anaheim police just over a week ago. Many people who had attended a protest outside the Anaheim police department earlier in the day were present. People from the community helped block and guard the entrance to Anna Dr in order to maintain peace during the vigil - time when people were sharing prayer, song, and paying respects to their fallen brother.
People held white candles as a woman from the community led the people in prayer. A peaceful, much different scene from that of last week when Anaheim police raided the neighborhood, indiscriminately shooting at the Anna Dr residents with rubber bullets. Many still bare the scars, not just from the military grade rubber bullets that were fired on them, or of the K-9 that “accidentally” escaped and attacked a mother who was protecting her child, but of losing a loved one in such an unjust way.
The vigil ended with a Danza Azteca ceremony shared by a local danza circle. As they concluded the ceremony, the circle invited everyone to gather at the altar that has been left for Manuel to sing one last nahuatl prayer song together. “Ometeotl Huitzilopochtli”, a warrior song - just like all the sisters and brothers that have taken to the streets to demand justice.
The night ended with a stronger sense of community for the people in Anna Dr. Familiar and non-familiar faces shared smiles, handshakes, and even some tears, but their hearts beat stronger knowing that the fight against the injustices isn’t over, and that all they have to lose is the fear of the police that they’ve been carrying for so long..