Trenton, N.J. – Mayor W. Reed Gusciora today announced the release of two powerful videos recorded during a prayer vigil on the front steps of City Hall on Oct 30, 2021, featuring local pastors, mothers of gun violence victims, and the Mom's Demand Action organization.
Each two-minute video includes testimonies from Regina Thompson-Jenkins and Delma Nazario, both of whom lost their sons to gun violence in Trenton. They spoke of the devastation of losing their sons and a message to youth to “put the guns down!” Additional speakers included Rev. Ernest D. Wormley, Jr, New Salem Baptist Church, Rev. John H. Harris, Galilee Baptist Church, and Rev. Erich Kussman, Saint Bartholomew Lutheran Church.
"Trentonians understand all too well that violent crime victims are more than names in a paper or numbers on a report," said Mayor Gusciora. "As we approach the holiday season and express our gratitude for the loved ones still in our lives, we must also remember the ones we lost to gun violence."
The videos' purpose is to start a dialogue with at-risk youth and their families in the City and throughout urban America about the devastating toll left by gun violence.
“Public safety has to start with us,” concluded Gusciora. “In the coming months, we will continue to work with pastors and community leaders as well as victims’ families to reach out to at-risk youth. We can’t do it with increased police measures alone.”
Like many cities across the country, Trenton has experienced an uptick of homicides throughout the pandemic, despite other major crimes trending downward.
To view the videos, click the links below:
Video 1 - Regina Thompson-Jenkins, mother who lost her son to gun violence, along with Mayor Reed Gusciora, Rev. Jose Rodriguez: Pentecostal Church Assembly of God , and Rev. Erich Kussman: Saint Bartholomew Lutheran Church
Video 2 -Delma Nazario, mother who also lost her son to gun violence, along with Rev. John H. Harris: Galilee Baptist Church and Rev. Ernest D. Wormley, Jr.: New Salem Baptist Church
Advocates and clergy outside City Hall