Hundreds of people begin the Purple Walk of Strength, a 5k held at College of the Canyons which benefitted the Domestic Violence Center of Santa Clarita Valley Oct. 22, 2016. Austin Westfall/ The Signal
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Saturday morning marked the 5th annual Purple Walk of Strength, a 5k held at College of the Canyons which aimed to raise money and awareness for domestic violence.

About 300 people turned out to the event, which had a goal of raising at least $10,000 for the Domestic Violence Center of Santa Clarita Valley.

“This is not only a fundraising event, this is an awareness event, so it’s really important that we realize that domestic violence is right here in Santa Clarita,” said Sue Reynolds, a longtime board member of the Domestic Violence Center of Santa Clarita Valley.

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Photographer Mike Marsalisi snaps a photo of participants in a themed frame at the 5th annual Purple Walk of Strength at College of the Canyons Saturday. Austin Westfall/ The Signal

Reynolds said six women including an infant died of domestic violence in the Santa Clarita Valley last year.

The event saw hundreds turn out who had a personal connection to the cause.

Attendee Danielle Drake had a past abusive relationship, but attended Saturday’s event primarily because her friend was killed as a result of domestic violence.

“I know that she’d want us to stay strong” Drake said.

Others attended simply because they wanted to show support.

“I think it’s good to support those who struggle with domestic violence (and) those who are afraid to come forward,” a participant said.

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Participants stretch near the College of the Canyons football field before the 5th annual Purple Walk of Strength 5k begins. Austin Westfall/ The Signal

The walk began at 9 a.m. near the College of the Canyons football field.

Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Capt. Roosevelt Johnson kicked off the race with a megaphone.

“(Events like this) bring everyone together and focus on issues and this is one of those important issues,” Johnson said.

The Domestic Violence Center of Santa Clarita Valley creates healthy relationships through intervention, prevention and education to end the cycle of violence, according to the center’s website.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

 

 

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