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Jan. 8, 2011: Peace was shattered

On Jan. 8, 2011, the peace of a sunny Tucson day was shattered at 10:10 a.m. in front of a Northwest Safeway, when a lone gunman killed six Tucsonans and wounded 13 others at a Congress on Your Corner event with U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

One of those wounded three years ago was Suzi Hileman, a Jewish Tucsonan who brought her neighbor, nine-year-old Christina-Taylor Green, to meet her congresswoman. Green was the youngest of the six individuals murdered that day.

“It’s like it happened yesterday,” Hileman told the AJP on Jan. 7. “It’s like it’s always been this way, and it’s still surprising.

“What I want – to have Christina back — I can’t have. The world is a lesser place without her,” she says. “I’ll just move forward and try to make the world a better place, like she wanted to.”

Hileman has started the Grandparents In Residence nonprofit, which emphasizes inter-generational mentoring. GRIN is sponsoring Stroll & Roll on Saturday, Jan. 11 from 8 to 11 a.m. at the Christina-Taylor Green Memorial Linear Park (at the rest area on Shannon, south of Magee). Participants may bring running shoes, wheelchairs, roller skates or baby carriages to stroll or roll along the 3.1 mile paved loop trail.

The event will include crafts, music and a signing of “A Certain Slant of Light. Emerging from the Shadows of Mental Illness” by Sheila Wilensky and the Our Place Clubhouse Thursday Writing Group from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Stroll and Roll is part of Tucson Beyond: Commemorate/Celebrate/Commit on Jan. 11, sponsored by Tucson Medical Center and the Community Partnership of Southern Arizona. www.beyond-tucson.org