Winta Mehari was murdered on Thanksgiving Day while feasting with her family. She was 28 years old, a mother, and about ready to graduate form California State University East Bay.
The muder was committed by her husband’s two brother. Her husand had died suddenly in March of 2006. Cause of death was never determined. Her husband’s family believe it was Mehari’s fault. So, on Thanksgiving Day they burst into her home killing Mehari, her 17 year old brother, and her mother. Another family member escaped by jumping out a three story window. He is now wheel chair bound.
The community was shocked by her murder. They pulled together to help the family through this tragic time. Donations poured in. Over a thousand community members showed up at her funeral.
On Friday, Mehari’s youngest son took the podium for Mehari at her graduation ceremony. He held a sign saying “I’ll graduated for you, Mum”. Hundreds of family and friends were on hand as well asthe University President, Mohammad Qayoumi.
CSUEB has been around for 50 years. It was formally called Cal State Hayward. In that history, there have only been diplomas awarded posthumously–Mehari’s one of them.