Elk Grove, California, will soon have a new park named “Singh and Kaur Park,” honoring two Sikh-American grandfathers who were shot to death while taking their daily afternoon walk in 2011. On Wednesday night, Elk Grove City Council approved a resolution to name a new five-acre park site after the two men and their families, according to NBC affiliate KCRA.
“The people of Elk Grove embraced these families and the Sikh community in the difficult days after this tragedy. In the five years that have passed, it is clear that the bond has grown even stronger,” Amar Shergill, American Sikh Public Affairs Association board member, told NBC News. “We are hopeful that, by keeping alive the memories of these beloved grandfathers, a witness may be motivated to come forward, bring the murderers to justice, and collect a $57,000 reward.”
On March 4, 2011, Gurmej Singh Atwal, 78, and Surinder Singh, 65, who wore turbans and kept beards as articles of their Sikh faith, were walking along Stockton Boulevard when an unknown assailant shot at them from what police believe was a gold or tan raised pickup truck, according to NBC affiliate KCRA. Singh died on the scene. Atwal died about a month later.
Kevin Bewsey explained the name of the park in a staff report to the Elk Grove City Council: “The proposed name ‘Singh and Kaur Park’ is in memorial for the two men that have passed and in recognition of their families they leave behind and the community that embraced them. The use of both ‘Singh’ and ‘Kaur’ was proposed to represent not only the men who had died but also the wives they left behind. It is important to note that ‘Kaur’ is the common last name used for women in the culture of the Sikh community.”
The case is still unsolved. Police still do not have a suspect description or a motive.
"Our detectives are still working leads that occasionally come in,” Elk Grove assistant police chief Bryan Noblett told NBC affiliate KCRA. “As you might imagine, that's slowed down, unfortunately, over the years. But it's still an open case, and we're still encouraging anyone with any information on this case to please bring it forward.”
A $57,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest, and construction for the $2 million project is expected to begin in 2018, according to KCRA.
Correction: An earlier version of this story stated that Surinder Singh's name was Surinder Kaur Singh. His name is Surinder Singh.
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