UNION CITY -- Six weeks after two young men were killing in a gang-related shooting, community leaders have organized an anti-violence march to take place in the Decoto district Thursday evening.
The Community Night Walk Against Violence is scheduled at 6:30 p.m., and its mile-long route will go from Our Lady of the Rosary Church, at 703 C St., to Kennedy Park, at 1333 Decoto Road.
"We want to bring awareness about the importance of reducing and ending youth violence," said Chris Cara, of Filipino Advocates for Justice, one of the walk's participating groups.
The march was called in response to an Aug. 25 shooting that killed two men -- Daniel Garcia-Sanchez, 21, and Carlos Estrada-Partida, 18.
Robert Dylan Redding, 19, of Union City, and Eric Estrada, 22, of Hayward, were arrested after the shooting and charged with murder with felony gang enhancements.
"One homicide is one too much, but when two people get gunned down it's just all the more devastating," Cara said.
Union City's rate of violent crime is relatively low -- the two recent killings were the only homicides this year. The city had none last year.
But as with many municipalities, Union City has experienced occasional flare-ups of gun violence involving teens. The worst occurred in 2007, when Union City recorded five homicides, including the slayings of two teenage boys in separate shootings.
In response to that spate of violence, Union City community leaders formed the Youth Violence Prevention Coalition, comprised of local nonprofit organizations, city officials, religious leaders and concerned residents.
Now that gunfire between teenagers again has reappeared, community leaders hope the march on Thursday sends a clear message. Yesenia Molinar, member of Union City's Human Relations Commission and one of the march's organizers, said Decoto district residents fear more shootings could occur in retaliation.
"The goal is to the get the community united and to let everyone know that we do not tolerate violence in Union City," Molinar said.
Staff writer Natalie Neyssa Alund contributed to this report. Contact Chris De Benedetti at 510-353-7011. Follow him at Twitter.com/cdebenedetti.