A Dia de Los Muertos altar will be unveiled this afternoon at a San Francisco library to allow local citizens to display photos of deceased family members and honor them with offerings.

The altar will be unveiled at 3:30 p.m. at the Excelsior Library, located at 4400 Mission St., according to event organizers.

Dia de Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a holiday celebrated in Mexico and by Latin Americans living in the U.S. and Canada that focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember those who have died.

The Excelsior Library Dia de Los Muertos altar will be unveiled by Luis Marquez, whose son Brian was murdered on 24th Street in San Francisco in 2005. The murder remains unsolved.

Several high-profile murders have occurred in the Excelsior District in recent years, including the triple homicide of members of the Anthony Bologna family in June 2008, and the Oct. 12 fatal stabbing of Eric Buschman.

In response to the violence, members of the community have begun forming neighborhood watch programs.

“Excelsior residents are resilient,” Supervisor John Avalos said in a statement. “Community members are saying enough is enough. We are channeling our fear and anger into efforts that will help us feel safer.”

Monday’s event will be attended by Avalos, Ingleside police Captain David Lazar, and various members of the community.

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