Ashley Hopkinson

Left behind: A mother’s grief

Jessie Phillips has lived in the same home from the time she was a little girl. If it wasn’t for her home, she says, she wouldn’t live in Richmond. “It’s just too hard,” she said. Just the sound of sirens sends her into a fit of tears. Each siren sound reminds her of the death of her son Anthony Robinson. Robinson was shot in his car following an altercation at a gas station in Richmond on July 18, 2004. His mother Jessie says her son and his friends were followed in his car to Albany, just off the Gilman exit. Shots were fired, and her son Anthony was hit in the head by one of the bullets. He spent four days on life support before he died. On his birthday each year, December 16, Phillips takes out a memorial in the West County Times in his memory. It’s something that gives her peace, she says. Jessie credits prayer, family and community support for keeping her going. She has two remaining children: Kenneth Robinson, 25, and Jessica Walker, 32. She regularly attends events hosted and organized by Charlene Harris of Healing Circles of Hope ( Mother’s Against Senseless Killing, MASK).

Nicholl Park: Skateboarding saved my life

In Richmond, finding a way around violence is a daily struggle. But as the city struggles to get a handle on youth violence, a local skateboard park serves as a reminder that, sometimes, peace can come from an unlikely source.

Bay Area Storytelling Festival comes to Richmond

The laughter of more than 100 children echoed through the auditorium of the Craneway Pavillion in Richmond, where students in third to sixth grade gathered Thursday for the first day of the 2012 Bay Area Storytelling Festival. The event continues today until Sunday evening at 4:30 p.m.

Richmond YouthWORKS program gets new facility

The construction won’t be complete until June, but staff at the Richmond YouthWORKS program are already excited about taking ownership of a new 13-room facility at the corner 27th and Macdonald Streets directly opposite St. Cornelius Church. The building’s grand opening will be in August. For more information on programs at Richmond YouthWORKS call 510-412-2044.

Career Day at Nystrom Magnet Elementary School

Only about a third of the Nystrom Magnet Elementary School cafeteria was filled with students at Friday’s career fair. But where the event was short on attendance, it made up for with inspiration, as almost a dozen panelists from across the Bay Area gathered to motivate students in forth to sixth grade about future careers.

Silly Parade highlights in photos

There was enough silly to go around at the 5th Annual Richmond Silly Parade. More than 100 residents came out in support of an hour of silliness at the corner of MacDonald Avenue and 23rd Street. Residents made their way down the street showing off clown hats, circus outfits and homemade creations such as the outfits from The Real Housewives of Richmond. If the getups weren’t enough entertainment, Slim Chance from Berkeley “Clowns not Bombs” gave a few laughs from his unicycle. And for a dose of Gospel inspiration the Umoja community choir belted out a rendition of “Help me on my Journey.”

A gathering to celebrate women, community

“We are family, I’ve got all my sisters with me,” blasted out the speakers in the multipurpose room of Lovonya DeJean Middle School Saturday. The popular ‘70s song by Sister Sledge got a crowd of more than 200 women up on their feet, a few dancing and others clapping and singing to the popular party tune at the 5th Annual International Women’s Day event titled “Sisters in Solidarity: Walking for our Beloved Community.” Councilwoman and co-emcee for the day Jovanka…

Proposition 8 struck down in SF today

Proposition 8, California’s voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage, was struck down by the Ninth U.S. Circuit of Appeals in San Francisco earlier today. In a 2-1 vote, the court ruled Prop 8, which was passed in 2008, unconstitutional because it violates the civil rights of gay and lesbian couples. Richmond Confidential is continuing to follow this story.

Sixth Street residents receive renovation makeover

Guadalupe Corral likes to keep a tidy house. But this past Monday the main rooms in her home of two and a half years were in complete disarray— dishes were stacked on the table instead of in the cupboards, a large aqua ladder blocked off half of her beige couch set and tools were scattered in the bathroom around a medium sized hole meant for a sink. But Corral couldn’t be happier because she knows the chaos is temporary. Once…

Martin Luther King Jr Day of Service draws a crowd

Inspired by the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr, more than 400 Richmond residents volunteered their time and skills at the 5th Annual Martin Luther King Day of Service at the Richmond Greenway. The event, which had a festival atmosphere, offered musical entertainment, food, and booths with information on everything from habitat gardens to food systems and climate change. A group of local organizations led by the city, Urban Tilth and Friends of Richmond Greenway worked to maintain and beautify…