Toddler’s Death Spurs Anti-Crime Rally

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John Raphael of New Hope Baptist ChurchA rally against violent crime in honor of two year old Jeremy Galmon will be held Saturday in Central City. At the helm: pastor and community leader John Raphael of New Hope Baptist Church.

Pastor John Raphael has been on the corner of La Salle and Washington Streets this week, letting people know about a rally against violent crime, as he holds up a giant photo of murdered toddler Jeremy Galmon. He wants the image of this child to be burned in the minds of people.

“I think if we just see his picture and think about him there’s nobody that can say that he was living a lifestyle that caused his death or doing anything to anyone else,” Raphael said.

Raphael says he hopes the Galmon’s death is an awakening to neighborhoods across New Orleans.

That’s why he’s putting out the word to bring people to A.L. Davis Park, to come and hear from Galmon’s family, offer them comfort and prayer, and hear from other families of murder victims.

He says it’s time people speak up about violence, like they did for this toddler, and he and other pastors are reaching out to grandmothers, rising up these matriarchs to also speak up, because young people might listen to them, like they used to.

“It’s our children who are losing their lives and our children who are taking lives and sometimes it’s the word from their grandmother that can keep a child from making a bad decision from going in the wrong direction, and we want to give them a platform,” Raphael said.

Raphael hopes this child’s death could be the impetus to a movement that people will continue to get involved; call police when they hear shots, and keep the momentum going.

The rally – called “Learning from the pain – will be held Saturday at 2:30pm at A.L Davis Park at the corner of La Salle and Washington.