Luis Ramirez was murdered in mid July by a group of white teenagers. His story is one that should concern us all. While being beaten, the six teenagers, all whom were on the local football team, were allegedly yelling racial epitaths. Luis Rameriz was left on the street, bloodied, battered, and foaming at the mouth. He died two days after the attack, leaving behind a wife and two small children. There are many in the town that believe the actions of Hazelton greatly impacted the negative climate in the their town. Shenadoah, PA is located a mere 20 miles from Hazelton PA.
What was encouraging to me, watching and listening to this report, was the Mayor deciding that he was going to address this crisis head on by forming an advisory group to help build a new holistic community. It became clear to him that there was a division, seething below the surface, and until this tragic death of Luis Rameriz, he had been unaware of the growing tension. The mayor appears determined to help build a bridge between older generation of Shenandoah and the new inhabitants saying “we need to work together.”
One woman shared her experiences in town. While walking in town with her children, people have yelled out ” Here’s a quarter, take your kids to a landromat ’cause they are dirty half Mexicans.” She is caucasion and her partner is Mexican, a twenty year resident of Shenandoah. She now fears for his safety.