"Stop the killing" group aims to end violence - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

"Stop the killing" group aims to end violence

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Each cross represented a person lost to violence this 2013 year. Each cross represented a person lost to violence this 2013 year.
Nearly everyone there had lost a loved one to violence. Nearly everyone there had lost a loved one to violence.
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - "Stop the killing" became the battle cry Sunday as several hundred Mid-Southerners came together for a community wide picnic to end violence.

The group, Freedom From Unnecessary Negatives, organized the event at Audubon Park. Both people young and old came to participate in the event.

"The children come out, play, and just have a lot of fun," stated participant Angel Moore, 16.

But, if you listen closely, you'll hear many of the people at this picnic have something in common.

"I had a son that got killed in '97," said Memphis resident Sharon Martin.

Organizer Stevie Moore also lost his son to an act of violence.

"My son was killed in March 2003. (He was) shot in the head with an assault rifle," declared Moore.

Stevie Moore and his organization started this annual picnic 4-years-ago to focus on ways to stop all the killing in the community.

The goal of the event is simple and can be seen in banners stretched across the stage: "Stop the killing". The group wants to bring the community together in peace and unity.

Judge James Russell has been a supporter of Moore's group since it began. He is hoping events like this can help change people's minds about violence.

"My dream is (to) get away from the savage behavior that seems to be so prevalent in our society," Russell said.

For Moore and many others, while the picnic will not bring their loved ones back, they believe it can bring hope to a community that desperately needs it.

"Hopefully someone will takeaway that having fun is better than shooting guns," finished Moore.

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