SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - A local Asian Pacific Islander group has kicked off a new mission to buy a car for a 71-year-old man, brutally attacked outside a trolley stop in El Cajon.
Newly released photos show a heavily scarred Jose Serra inside his hospital room, after being moved from the ICU, some two weeks ago after an early morning trolley ride to work.
Police say Ezekiel Valdivia, a repeat violent offender, followed Serra off the trolley at the Arnele Avenue stop and stabbed him repeatedly, slashing his hand and head, and stabbing his stomach twice, causing life-threatening injuries which Serra survived.
“I first felt angry, but I want to redirect that anger into advocacy,” said JoAnn Fields, Director of the Filipino Resource Center.
On Thursday, Fields announced a campaign to purchase Serra a sense of security, in the form of a car, something Serra had not been able to afford.
"Peace of mind and safety is really the priority because we know there is trauma. While he works through the healing process, the option to drive his own car is ideal,” said Fields.
Fields is recruiting local businesses to donate a part of their proceeds on December 12.
Already signed up: the new Kusina restaurant on 7580 Miramar Road. At a $20 pop-up brunch event, 40% of the proceeds will go toward the fundraiser. Merchandise vendors at the same site will also be donating a part of the proceeds.
"We want to make sure that our elders feel safe in the community. This is one way, we’re trying to give that peace of mind to Mr. Serra,” said Fields.
Business owners interested in joining the fundraiser are asked to email JoAnn@apiinitiative.org.