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Phoenix opens Domestic Violence Awareness Month

PHOENIX -- Phoenix is turning purple, and you're going to see a lot of it around town this month.

The city officially launched is Paint Phoenix Purple campaign Friday. Purple has been adopted as the symbolic color of domestic abuse awareness.

"There's going to be purple ribbons, purple clothing, bracelets, landscape lighting, domestic violence trains, newsletter articles, public service announcements, and so much more," said Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton.

During October, numerous parts of Phoenix will adopt a purple hue, including City Hall. Purple light bulbs will be installed atop the building.

Libby Bissa with Phoenix Family Advocacy Center said Tovrea Castle will also be painted purple during October.

Third Street will have a purple line on it through downtown Phoenix.

Stanton said there's a reason the city wants to raise awareness of the issue.

"We raise it that it's not just a problem in some parts of our city, that it's not just a problem in some parts of the community," he said. "We raise it because it's an issue that all of us have to come to terms with because it affects all of us."

Phoenix City Councilwoman Thelda Williams said the message is that we can stop domestic violence.

"Each of us has to take on a personal responsibility to become aware, to know how to inform anyone who is a victim where to go, how to get emergency services, and what's out there," she said. "(We need to) stand and support them."

About 50,000 domestic violence-related calls are fielded by Phoenix 911 operators annually.

Watch a flash mob promoting Paint Phoenix Purple below.

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About the Author

Years with the company: I started on January 2, 2006.

Education: I was born in San Antonio, Texas, but we moved to Phoenix when I was one-year-old in 1957. I grew up here and graduated from Alhambra High School and attended Phoenix College.

Family: I am married to my wife Rene', who is a librarian in the Washington school district. During free time, I may be found playing basketball in the driveway with my son, Devin. He's also keeping me busy with school, Little League, and playing in chess tournaments around the Valley.

Favorite food: Lots of favorite food, but our favorite restaurant is Fajitas.

Favorite spot in Arizona: The Little America Hotel in Flagstaff.

Favorite news memory: We have to go back to October 15, 1979. I was a country music air personality at KROP Radio in Brawley, California, when we had a 6.7 earthquake. Thankfully, there were no deaths and only minor injuries, but the entire community was pretty freaked out and listening to the station on their transistor radios. I would not want to go through an earthquake again, but it sure was a great night to work in radio and see how it can make a difference in people's lives.

First job: Working as a stringer for 'The Arizona Republic' at high school football games. My first real job was flipping burgers at the old Sandy's Hamburgers at 51st Avenue and Indian School Road. My first radio job was as announcer at KALJ radio in Yuma in 1977.

First concert: Doug Oldham gospel concert in the 1970s at the old East High School in Phoenix.

Favorite sports team: Phoenix Roadrunners minor league hockey. My dad took me to a game when I was in grade school, and I was hooked. I wanted to be a radio hockey play-by-play man. I used to take my cassette recorder and sit up in the rafters of the Coliseum and do play-by-play. It was great later in life to also take my son to Roadrunners games. Too bad the team just folded, I'll miss them. (Going to the Coyotes is fun, but they're not "my" team.)

Outside interests: My family and I are active in our church - Northern Hills Community Church in Phoenix. We enjoy going to movies, sporting events, and like to vacation at the Beach Cottages in the Pacific Beach area of San Diego. And I love to play catch, basketball, football with my son.


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