MUKILTEO — In a community shattered by the shooting of four young adults last year and divided by plans to open a mosque, an event is planned Saturday as a show of unity.
“This is an opportunity for the entire community of Mukilteo to come together and walk together,” said Paul Kramer. Families, children and people of a variety of faiths and viewpoints are welcome, he said.
Kramer’s son, University of Washington student Will Kramer, was injured in last year’s shooting at a house party where three other friends were killed: Anna Bui, Jacob Long and Jordan Ebner, all 19.
In January, their former Kamiak High School classmate, Allen Ivanov, was sentenced to life behind bars without the possibility of release for the deaths and the injury to Will Kramer.
Saturday’s rally was organized by the Islamic Center of Mukilteo. Its president, Mohammed Riaz Khan, also wants to bring attention to the issues of mental health, firearms safety, drug abuse and nonviolence, Kramer said.
The goal is to move toward creating a community that promotes mental health awareness and providing resources to help those in need.
“The community was devastated last year,” Kramer said. “We’re interested in promoting healing.”
Khan said he first began thinking of having a walk and rally following the deaths of Bui, Long and Ebner.
He said he wanted the mosque to show leadership in promoting unity. “We are a part of the community and we care for the whole community,” Khan said.
Students, principals, pastors and parents have told him they support the march, he said. Some students said they will bring posters to the rally.
Last year, opposition to the opening of a mosque in the city was led by Peter Zieve, president of the local aerospace firm Electroimpact Inc. Zieve later apologized for his actions. His company also reached a $485,000 legal settlement with the state Attorney General’s Office agreeing, among other things, to adopt nondiscriminatory hiring policies.
The mosque is planned to be built at 3920 Harbour Pointe Blvd.
Kahn said Saturday’s walk and rally is the first of what he hopes will be a series of community events sponsored by the mosque’s members.
Plans are in the works for a community picnic in July, he said.
Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Walk and rally
Saturday’s Walk for Hope, Rally for Peace in Mukilteo begins at 9 a.m. at Endeavour Elementary School, 12300 Harbour Pointe Blvd., and ends at Pointe of Grace Lutheran Church, 5425 Harbour Pointe Blvd.
Donations will be accepted to support Mukilteo’s new Boys &Girls Club.