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Teenager Who Performed At Obama’s Inauguration Ceremony Is The Latest Victim Of Chicago Gun Violence

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"Teenager Who Performed At Obama’s Inauguration Ceremony Is The Latest Victim Of Chicago Gun Violence"

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Hadiya Pendleton, 15 years old, was killed in Chicago on Tuesday.

Less than two weeks ago, Hadiya Pendleton was leading her classmates in the King College Prep School Marching Band down Pennsylvania Avenue on the afternoon of President Obama’s second inauguration. It would be an opportunity of a lifetime for any 15 year old, but for Pendleton, it was her last. On Tuesday, she was gunned down in a park a few blocks from school on the South Side of Chicago, less than a mile from the first family’s home.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Pendleton and another classmate, a 16 year old boy, were both caught in the middle of a gang war. The boy was still in serious condition on Tuesday evening, but Pendleton did not survive:

Friends of the slain girl said King was dismissed early today because of exams, and students went to the park on Oakenwald–something they don’t usually do.

Friends said the girl was a majorette and a volleyball player, a friendly and sweet presence at King, one of the top 10 CPS selective enrollment schools. Pendleton performed with other King College students at President Barack Obama’s inaugural events.

In the last year, Chicago has endured a surge of gun-related murders, more than quadruple the number of homicides in New York City and 58 percent more than the number of U.S. soldiers shot and killed in Afghanistan. During the recent debate over gun control, Mayor Rahm Emmanuel has sought to place his city at the front of the push for reform, instructing the city’s pension funds to divest from any gun manufacturer and supporting more gun buyback programs.

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