As is typical in Hartford, we tend to love meetings and planning but far too often those meetings don't translate into action on our streets. I hope that will not be the outcome of the "Faith based initiative" being spearheaded by Hartford's Police Chief James Rovella and Hartford City Council members.
Two meetings have been held so far and a lot of great ideas have been put on the table and several of the key players in the "faith community" have been at the table during the first two meetings held. Ideas on the table don't save lives in our streets, actions do.
The initiative needs to hit the streets for several reasons, but two that I want to mention here. One of the driving forces behind the initiative and planning was Council assistant Jean Ward. Jean organized and set up the meetings. In a verification of the saying that "only the good die young" Jean passed away two weeks ago of a brain aneurysm. From what I have been told, she was stricken during a sendoff for one of her sons who is in the military and was being deployed to Afghanistan. She never regained consciousness and died the following day
What greater tribute to her than to carry on her work and make sure the initiative gets off the ground and saves lives of our young people by preventing senseless violence.
Another reason is an unfortunate shooting death that took place this weekend. Sam Saylor has been at the initial meetings and took part in the formation of the Faith Based Initiative. Sam lost his son to a shooting during an altercation behind the Betnances School Saturday afternoon. Shane Oliver was pronounced dead at Hartford Hospital about 6:18PM Saturday after efforts to save his life were unsuccessful.
The initiative can't start soon enough to cut down on this senseless violence.