Friday, August 12, 2011

Fundraiser held in honor of killed San Gabriel teen

ALHAMBRA - Friends and supporters of deceased San Gabriel teenager Bo Feng will host a fundraiser this morning at Tac City Airsoft in South El Monte.

The all-day event begins at 10 a.m. and is designed to help her family and promote pedestrian safety in the San Gabriel Valley.

"We want to make it safe for everyone," said Selina Feng, whose 17-year-old daughter was hit and killed by an unidentified driver July 15. Feng was struck by the vehicle while crossing the street at the intersection of Shorb Street and New Avenue in Alhambra. She died from her injuries the following day.

While city officials said they need time to conduct studies of the intersection, Alhambra and San Gabriel residents argue that the crosswalk is unsafe.

The fundraiser titled "CQB DAY" will include a free lunch. Airsoft products from Echo1, Socom Gear, and Madbull Airsoft will be raffled off. Tac City Airsoft is located at 2208 Edwards Ave.

One of the fundraiser's organizers, David Eng of San Gabriel, said the tragedy has struck a chord in the community.

"Her funeral service was packed with people from all over," he said. "And there were grown men crying."

Eng said that Feng's untimely death highlights pedestrian safety problems in the San Gabriel Valley.

A 2009 study by the California Office of Traffic Safety found that San Gabriel ranked seventh out of 104 California cities that reported accidents involving pedestrians. That's the highest in the San Gabriel Valley.

Alhambra and South Pasadena were tied for 16th on the list, followed by Rosemead at 17th and Monterey Park at 39th.

Led by Feng's Gabrielino High School classmate Kimiko Nishitsuji, a group presented more than 1,000 signatures Monday at the Alhambra City Council meeting.

The group wants Alhambra and San Gabriel to work together to add reflectors and a button-activated crossing sign to the crosswalk at New Avenue and Shorb.

Both cities would have to agree to the changes. About two-thirds of the intersection is part of Alhambra and one- third is San Gabriel property.

"It shouldn't take a tragedy like the death of Bo Feng for the city to make a change and unfortunately she isn't the first," Nishitsuji said.

Alhambra City Manager Julio Fuentes said the city is looking at the petition and is empathic to the pedestrian safety concerns.

Mary Chavez, Alhambra's director of public works, said the city is waiting to review the results of the ongoing police investigation to see what caused the accident.

Before the city can make changes to any intersection or crosswalk, she added, it must conduct a traffic engineering study that would look at historical data, traffic counts and field observations.

Eng insisted the crosswalk is obviously unsafe.

"Drivers, they just blow by to try and catch the green light," he said.

Read more: Fundraiser held in honor of killed San Gabriel teen - Whittier Daily News

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