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First off my prayers have gone up for everyone involved; to the victims, the victims’ families, to everyone who attended the party, to the people who lived at the home where it took place, the neighbors, the police and paramedics who were the first-responders at the scene, and to everyone who lives in Wilkinsburg whose hearts are as heavy as mine.

God please give us the strength to get through this, and please let these killers be found and be granted the exact pain and suffering that their barbaric act did to everyone involved.

And lastly I’d like to ask people to not cast aspersions on my entire community because of the heinous crime done by two people.

When I tell people that I live in Wilkinsburg, the first thing they say is how dangerous it is here and why don’t I move to a safer community.

To that I ask them “and where might that be?”

It’s true that we had our problems with crime, and for a while people were moving to other communities. But aside from the shootings last night, please ask yourself and think back on the last time you heard Wilkinsburg’ s name spoken negatively in the media.

There are crimes that occur all over this city, in all communities both Black and White. But no other neighborhood is verbally trashed as much as my neighborhood, and it’s simply not true that it’s the worst place in this city.

There are multitudes of good, hardworking, law-abiding and God-fearing people in Wilkinsburg, and instead of wasting time and needlessly exposing the infirmities of a community in mourning, why not use your time in praying for and supporting us.

Leslie Garrison

Wilkinsburg, PA

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