Merced County Times Newspaper
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Merced groups to hold memorial for ‘Homeless Hero’

A consortia of organizations in Merced will hold “A Celebration of Life for Joseph Edwards.”
A consortia of organizations in Merced will hold “A Celebration of Life for Joseph Edwards.”

A consortia of organizations in Merced will hold “A Celebration of Life for Joseph Edwards.”

The event will be held on Saturday, June 19, at McNamara Park, at K and 12th Streets, in south Merced. The service will be near the location of the park’s small gazebo, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. It is free and open to the public.

The purpose of the event is to Celebrate the Life of Joseph Edwards, a local “Homeless Hero,” who died earlier this year.

Edwards, along with his partner, Bernice Gonzalez, were recognized on April 4, 2011 by the City of Merced and then Mayor Bill Spriggs for saving the lives of four young people whose car had plunged into the frigid Bear Creek waters in December 2010. Joseph and Bernice had also been recognized for their heroism at a UC Merced “Abolishing Homeless Forum” on April 9, 2011.

Residents will be joined by representatives of Sierra Saving Grace, Healthy House, United Domestic Workers Union, and Merced Coalition for Fair Housing, who will have information to share with the community.

The program will include Juneteenth and Summer Solstice explanations and celebrations. An open mic opportunity will be available. Organizers are encouraging masks and social distancing.

The California Central Valley Journey for Justice is affiliated with the Poor People’s Campaign.

For more information, contact Lee M. Greenawalt at 355-0591 or Gloria M. Sandoval at [email protected] (631-9696). Visit California Central Valley Journey for Justice on Facebook.

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