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Mural in Duncan Park honors legacy of Anita Franklin

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Posted at 9:49 PM, Jul 23, 2021

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Anita Franklin's fight to end gun violence began in Duncan Park after her son Antonio Franklin was killed there in 2014.

Now a mural honoring her legacy is nearly completed in that same park.

The mural was created by Lexington Artist Keaton Young and includes an image of Franklin with doves on one side and a silhouette of her speaking to a group on the other.

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"I describe her as fire," said Franklin's son Ricardo. "She's very fiery and passionate about what she did. So I think Keaton's work has been amazing and it truly brings out who my mom was."

Anita Franklin led countless Peace Walks in Duncan Park and was a resource to other survivors of gun violence. Ricardo Franklin has carried on his mother's mission to end gun violence in Lexington since she died unexpectedly in February 2020.

"She embodied her community and she spread their message so well and that's what made her so special and now she gets to overlook this park that was such a heartbreaking place for her and she made it a triumph," he said.

As Lexington experiences a rise in gun violence this summer, Ricardo said he hopes to be a support system and a force for change, just like his mom.

"She found a way to push through and she was a voice for her community, truly, and that's what I hope to be."

The new mural sits next to another mural, one that Anita Franklin loved.

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It reads: "Years from now, no one may remember who I was or what I had done. What matters is I was important in the life of a child."

"That's something that she always said," Ricardo said.

So Duncan Park is the perfect place for this mural, he said.

It's the place where Anita Franklin's work began and it's the place where it will continue.