PASO ROBLES — A park bench in the Downtown City Park was dedicated Friday afternoon, Sept. 25, to the memory of Trevon Perry and Cristopher Wilson.

The bench faces the playground and sits along the sidewalk that leads into the Park from its southwest corner. It has a memorial plaque honoring Perry and Wilson, who were “taken too soon by senseless violence.”

Nearly 50 people attended the bench dedication, including San Luis Obispo County District Attorney Dan Dow, many wearing red and black — the official colors of Homicide Victims’ Awareness. Sept. 25 is also the National Day of Remembrance for Murder Victims.

“Thank you for joining us today on this National Murder Victim’s Remembrance Day,” said Caryssa Esquivel, Perry’s sister, while standing in front of the bench. “We never anticipated that we would be remembering my brother on this day, but we are grateful for those who took the time to be here and share this day and our pain with us.”

In addition to their names, a portion of the plaque below a heart reads, “There is family, then there are friends you choose to be family.”

“Tre and Topher had a bond that was deeper than friendship — it was family that they chose to be for each other,” Esquivel said. “Both of them should still be here today but have had their lives, dreams, and potential stolen from them by senseless violence. With so much going on in our world and our community in 2020, it is easy to be distracted from what truly matters.”

The memorial bench was made possible through a crowdfunding campaign. The families chose the playground’s location because the young men loved hearing children laughing and watching them play. People placed roses on the bench after the ceremony.

“I would like to thank the community on behalf of Cristopher,” said April Anguiano, Wilson’s aunt. “You have given us a place to come sit and share new memories on this bench. All while feeling like they are right here with us.”

Perry, 28, was reported missing on March 16. His body was found June 18 at a home in the City of Riverside.

In December of 2019, Perry testified for SLO County District Attorney’s Office prosecutors at the preliminary hearing of murder suspect Kejuan Guy Bynum. Bynum is suspected of stabbing 23-year-old Cristopher Vento Wilson on June 1, 2019, during a fight in Shandon. Many believe Perry’s disappearance and death were related to the murder case.

Paso Robles Police Department detectives, along with the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office, arrested 23-year-old Nicholas Ron, of Paso Robles, for the murder of Perry on June 28.

On June 30, PRPD detectives, along with San Luis Obispo County District Attorney Investigators, arrested 24-year-old Vivianna Rodriguez, of Paso Robles, for being an accessory in the murder of Perry.

On Wednesday, Sept. 23, PRPD detectives, along with the SLO DA’s Office, arrested 22-year-old Nyessa Ron, 18-year-old Valente Holquin III in Victorville, and 25-year-old Alberto Garzon of Riverside, for being an accessory in the murder of Perry. All three were booked into the San Luis Obispo County Jail.

Esquivel pointed to others that should be remembered on National Day of Remembrance for Murder Victims such as Kristin Smart, James Watson and Nancy Woodrum.

“Stand with us to demand an end to the violence so no other families will have to remember the one they love on this day,” Esquivel said.

Photos by Brian Williams

Getting through this together, Paso Robles