A vigil will be held in honor of community activist, Daniel Landeros

September 25, 2023 /

Daniel Landeros, a community advocate and teacher, tragically lost his life to gun violence on his birthday, last Monday night at Yokuts Park. Tonight, September 25, a vigil will be held at Yokuts Park to honor his life and demand justice at 5:30 p.m. 

Audrey Chavez, Executive Director of the Bakersfield AIDS Project and main organizer of the vigil, stated that more than payers are needed — justice needs to happen. 

Chavez was contacted Wednesday by Landeros’s sisters in regards to his death and the need to get justice. While the family is not ready to speak on his death, his sister did tell Chavez what message she wanted out to the community. 

“The need for people to come forward. The need for justice for Daniel,” said Chavez recounting what his sister asked her to speak about. “The work he’s done, all the facets of Daniel.”

Landeros was involved in the community through many ways such as the SEIU, voting efforts, FAST, Census, LGBTQ+, Bakersifields AIDS Project Ricky’s Retreat, immigration, and much more. 

Chavez work worked with Landeros on several occasions and stated when she was driving to Yokuts park after his death she could see Landeros all over town. 

“I could see Daniel at almost every spot on my drive, whether it was in front of the police department for an action, whether it was in front of city council chambers, whether it was in front of McCarthy’s office, whether it was at Yokuts Park,” said Chavez. “Everywhere that we were in a lot of different places whether it was celebrating the day of the teacher, a march, or an action item is Daniel. 

Landeros’ presence in the community has sparked many people to come together over his death.

“I believe that’s the reason why there were so many people who wanted to do something to decry this horrific killing,” said Chavez speaking about the vigil. “Daniel is the type of person who would have taken this up himself. So for us not to decry the loss of such an active, amazing person in our community, not just city-wide but county-wide and at the national level. He was well connected and he deserves justice.”

Chavez continued to say that in senseless tragedies and social justice movements, Daniel was always present. 

The reason for the vigil according to Chavez is because more than prayer is needed. 

“There needs to be more than just prayer. There needs to be accountability. There needs to be transparency and there needs to be an outcry,” said Chavez. “Injustices like this should not be happening. We hope any and all measures will be brought quickly so that people can feel safe in the community.”

In regards to gun violence, Chavez stated that there needs to be change on all levels. 

“We need more done so that it isn’t easy for people to commit crimes such as this. We need to protect the lives of our individuals,” said Chavez. “We need policy, we need reform, we need a lot of work to be done.” 

Tonight, people will be coming together to show their support for the family and demand justice. Chavez stated the Landeros family will not be present.

“There will be people there remembering the fact that this is a tragic situation. We want justice for Daniel. We want people to know that he is a family person, he is a person of the community. He is one of our educators, and we want justice for him,” said Chavez. 

Friends and community members have also gone to Landeros’ Facebook page to express their condolences. 

The following statements are from his Facebook page:

“It just doesn’t seem real, we will get justice for you I promise… fly high in heaven baby….”

“I’m sorry I just lost for word you were alway great friend to us be alway gave us best advice in sadden to hear you are gone. My condolences are to you and your family may you rest in peace oh man hard to swallow just like your birthday was the other day know your gone.”

“Super sad Primo Rip”

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JaNell Gore

Ja'Nell Gore is a student at Cal State Bakersfield. In addition to writing for Kern Sol News she is a poet who loves any chance she has to perform and be with her community.