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At huge rally, demands for safe streets: “Let two beautiful souls, Rafi and Lily, guide us.”

12:28 AM CDT on June 13, 2022

The crowd at Rafi Cardenas’ crash sit. Photo: Eric Allix Rogers

Update: Hours after today's Walk + Roll for Safe Streets took place in the 46th and 47th wards, yet another vulnerable road user was lost to traffic violence in the 47th Ward. This evening local alderperson Matt Martin, who spoke at the demonstration, tweeted in a thread that a man was fatally struck by a driver that afternoon at Irving Park Road and Hoyne Avenue, a mile south of the Rafi Cardenas crash site, shortly after the man left an early voting rally Martin also attended.

Once the procession arrived at Leland and Winthrop, we observed minutes of silence to honor Lily. Attendees then either fanned out or continued to converse with one another.

Kyle Lucas, Sz Donnelly and I were the last to leave. Before we departed, a man approached us and asked about the rally, and we told him that it had already ended. The man then revealed he was at the scene when Lily was killed. He was visibly upset recalling the event and Sz consoled him as they stood next to her memorial, with a cross, flowers, candles, and stuffed animals. My heart broke all over again.

The end of the procession at the memorial to Lily Shambrook. Photo: Eric Allix Rogers
The end of the procession at the memorial to Lily Shambrook. Photo: Eric Allix Rogers

Right before we left, another person asked about the demonstration and how she could get involved with the movement. Those moments will stick with me as I continue to fight for Chicago to achieve Vision Zero, the elimination of all serious and fatal crashes. I’m grateful for everyone who attended today’s rally and I look forward to us continuing to honor the lives of Rafi and Lily.

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