Victims honored on 37th anniversary of McDonald’s San Ysidro massacre

The memorial at the site of the San Ysidro shooting in 1984. Courtesy of Southwestern College

Southwestern College held a Memorial Sunday to commemorate the anniversary of what was then the the biggest mass shooting in American history.

The commemoration took place at the Higher Education Center in San Ysidro, the site of the former McDonalds where 21 victims lost their lives on July 18, 1984, said Andre Harris, spokesperson for Southwestern College.

In front of the center stands a memorial which has 21 hexagonal pillars representing each victim. Stalls of flowers decorated them.

Family members of the victims attended the memorial.

The massacre happened 37 years ago at a fast food restaurant on West San Ysidro Boulevard, where James Huberty, 41, shot dead 21 people and injured 19 others.

About 77 minutes after opening fire for the first time, a police sniper killed him.

Harris said education survives “hate and violence”.

“The Southwestern College higher education center was built on the site of the old McDonald’s,” he said. “It is a symbol of triumph over tragedy in the community.”

Southwestern College Superintendent and President Mark Sanchez said July 18 “will live on in our hearts forever. We stand in solidarity with those whose lives have been forever changed by this tragedy. We cry and cry with the whole community. “

However, the center, he said, can be the symbol of “hope over helplessness and love over loss.”

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