San Jose

Cesar Chavez Mural Returning to San Jose School

A South Bay school says it's ready to take the fight to vandals who have defaced a mural of civil rights leader Cesar Chavez at Lowell Elementary in San Jose.

The school at the beginning of the school year has had to erase the mural to clear the graffiti. But on Friday, officials announced the mural is coming back and getting some new protection.

Cameron Moberg painted the mural with a friend and was saddened to hear of the vandalism earlier this year. Lowell Elementary's close-knit community said it was not about to let gangs of vandals ruin an inspiration for their children. The school community believes the mural symbolized hope of a better future in a neighborhood known for its crime issues.

"It's like a little piece of heaven in the middle of the craziness because there's so much hope and so much support," parent Alma Gonzalez said.

Assemblyman Ash Kalra, whose office commissioned the first mural, is raising funds to replace the artwork. A new mural will cost $7,500, but this time it will feature a protective coat to prevent future tags.

"While the news was painful, we know that the principles of the mural represented, were unmistakable and can't be destroyed," Kalra said.

Kalra said anyone who would like to contribute to the fundraiser can make donations on his official Facebook page.

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