MAX riders honor victims of attack, still leery of dangers - KPTV - FOX 12

MAX riders honor victims of attack, still leery of dangers

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

One week after a stabbing on a Portland MAX train, hundreds continue to stop and write messages and leave flowers at a growing memorial at the Hollywood Transit Station.

“It was pretty tragic,” Kiska Bon Schiller said, “I’m just glad that they stepped up.”

Friday Bon Schiller was one of those people who stopped by to honor the three men who stood up to protect two young women

According to the Portland Police Bureau, the two young women were the target of hate speech and threats by Jeremy Christian.

In the week following the stabbings, Bon Schiller said Portland has seen an outpouring of love and support but there is still a way to go.

“My heart goes out to the families that were affected and thank you to the three guys,” she said. “I think we are still very impacted by it.”

“That kind of hate is not going to be welcome here,” Lindsay Wilson added. “It is nice to have this kind of response to such hate, I wish there was more I could do.”

Wilson said teachers she knows in the Muslim community feel scared after the attack, some so scared that they won’t ride the MAX.

“I know for them they have definitely not been doing it, it has created a space where they don’t feel very comfortable,” she explained.

A number of other riders told FOX 12 they also are now leery of taking public transportation, but they also said they cannot let fear consume their lives.

TriMet officials said they are working to make everyone feel safe. The transit authority has increased police and security patrols and will do so through the Rose Festival before reevaluating how things are going.

Transportation officials are directing field operations supervisors and the on-street customer service team to spend more time riding the system. Additionally, 10 to 15 security guards are being added to the system.

TriMet spokesperson Angela Murphy told FOX 12 the move would be a temporary addition to the 15 security guards and 61 transit police officers currently in place, adding that 15 more community peace officers are being hired as quickly as possible.

“We understand that peace of mind doesn’t come easy after a horrific event like this,” she said. “It’s normal for individuals to feel angry, fearful and confused. Counselors at the Multnomah County Mental Health Call Center are ready to listen 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 503-988-4888.”

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