gun violence

Community Holds Celebration of Life for Girl Killed by Stray Bullet 16 Years Ago

March 22, 2022, would have been Sherdavia Jenkins' 25th birthday. 

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Loved ones and community members gathered Tuesday for a celebration of life for a young girl killed by a stray bullet nearly 16 years ago. 

March 22, 2022, would have been Sherdavia Jenkins' 25th birthday. 

The group, including a youth program, community and religious leaders, law enforcement, as well as her father and sister, gathered at the Sherdavia Jenkins Peace Park in northwest Miami-Dade. 

In addition to celebrating Sherdavia’s life, they are continuing a mission to make the park a safe space for kids to play and grow. 

“This day is an optimistic hope for peace in our community,” said David Jenkins, Sherdavia's father. “Hoping that this park can be a safe haven for children.”

Sherdavia’s sister, Catherine, was also there. 

“I remember in the beginning, I would always be very upset, depressed because she was basically my best friend,” said Catherine. “I now think of this day as such a beautiful day everyone is out here helping me celebrate with her. Celebrating not only her, but the lives of other kids whose lives were lost to senseless gun violence.”

Samantha Quarterman is the executive director of the youth program called MEYGA, which stands for Multi-Ethnic Youth Group Association. 

“We do not want to celebrate death anymore, we want to celebrate life,” said Quarterman.

Quarterman is helping the family continue that mission of giving kids a safe place in the community.

“We want to zone this as a kids' safe zone," Quarterman said.

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