Michelle Obama Attending Funeral Of Girl, 15, Who Played At Inauguration

Fri, February 8, 2013 1:03pm EDT by 2 Comments
Hadiya Pendleton
SplashNews

The first lady is set to attend the funeral of Hadiya Pendleton, 15, who was was senselessly gunned down on Jan. 29 near her Chicago school, just a week after performing at an inaugural event with her King College Prep high school.

Michelle Obama is planning to travel back to her hometown of Chicago to attend the furenal of 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton on behalf of the first family. Hadiya performed at a presidential inauguration event on Jan. 21, but was tragically killed just a week later after being shot in the back at a Chicago park.

A petition on the White House website urged the Obamas to attend Hadiya’s funeral, but her family expressed their own personal concerns that the attendance of the president would overshadow Hadiya’s funeral, which would make it difficult for her loved ones to say their last goodbyes.

The Chicago Tribune reports that President Barack Obama reached out to Hadiya’s family to offer his condolences.

Hadiya Pendleton’s Family Keeping Funeral A Celebration Of Life

Hadiya’s cousin Shatira Wilks, who serves as the family’s spokesperson, said they want to make sure the funeral is a celebration of Hadiya’s life, even with the first lady attending.

“It’s a nice gesture and we appreciate it,” Shatira said. “But that is who we are.”

The White House announced today that the First Lady is not expected to make public remarks, and first daughters, Malia and Sasha, are not expected to attend.

Michelle Obama Speaks Out About Hadiya Pendleton’s Death

Kristina Schake, Communications Director for Michelle Obama, spoke on behalf of the first lady in regards to her feeling about the tragic death of Hadiya.

“Too many times, we’ve seen young people struck down with so much of their lives ahead of them,” Kristain said. “As a mother and Chicagoan, the first lady was heartbroken to learn of the tragic loss of Hadiya Pendleton due to senseless gun violence.”

A $400,000 reward is being giving to anyone who has information which would lead to the arrest in Hadiya’s death. Hadiya’s tragic murder at Harsh Park in Chicago was part of the deadliest January for Chicago homicide in a decade, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Tell us what you think HollywoodLifers. Should President Obama accompany the first lady in attending Hadiya Pendleton’s funeral?

— Brittany Chanel Jackson

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