In honor of Tara: Fundraiser in slain teen’s memory Oct. 20

Martin Murphy Middle School students release balloons as they pass by a plaque of Tara Romero during a dedication ceremony Thursday for a memorial in honor of Romoero.

The new local nonprofit Everyone’s Child will host a fundraiser featuring live entertainment, a car show and vendor booths Oct. 20 to support their goal of creating a public art project depicting the likeness of Tara Romero, a 14-year-old Morgan Hill resident who was murdered in a drive-by shooting Nov. 4, 2011.
The event, which will kick off the nonprofit’s fundraising efforts, will take place at Murphy Ranch Townhomes, 310 East Dunne Ave., from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 20, according to organizer Lisa Washington.
Live entertainment will be provided by Morgan Hill musician Jeff Turner. Vendors will sell a variety of food, drinks, jewelry and arts and crafts.
All proceeds from the event will benefit the Everyone’s Child project, which will use the funds to support a bronze sculpture of Romero, a Sobrato High School freshman.
Founded by Romero’s mother Annette Nevarez, Everyone’s Child’s long-term goal is to “support the right of everyone’s child to envision and achieve their dreams in a peaceful, non-violent community,” Washington said.
The city council in July approved the public art project, which will be funded by the nonprofit and fundraising efforts. A site for the proposed bronze bust has not yet been approved.
Everyone’s Child is part of the Morgan Hill Community Foundation.
Romero was killed while standing with friends at the corner of Cosmo and Del Monte avenues Nov. 4, 2011. Five men drove by the corner, where the teens were waiting for a ride home from a birthday party, and opened fire at the group in an apparent gang-related shooting.
Romero was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics, police said.
Three of Romero’s friends were also shot and injured in the incident. All of the victims were Sobrato students at the time of the shooting.
While police think the shooting was gang-related, the victims were not associated with illegal street gang activity and were mistakenly targeted by the suspects.
Arrested shortly after the shooting took place were Esmeling Bahena, 18 of Morgan Hill; Ricardo Diaz, 19 of Morgan Hill; Fernando Mateo Lopez, 20 of Gilroy; Primitivo Hernandez, 23 of San Jose; and Ramon Gutierrez, 17 of Morgan Hill. They are in custody at Santa Clara County Jail, and each face charges of murder and attempted murder, with an enhancement for the gang-related nature of the crime. Their next court date is Oct. 24 at the Hall of Justice in San Jose.
The cost to attend the fundraiser is $20 per person, and tickets can be purchased in advance by calling Annette Nevarez at (408) 417-4702.