Friends of Critically Injured Arts Journalist to Hold Candlelight Vigil

RandyGenerPicAs reported Friday by Broadway World, veteran New York arts journalist Randy Gener is recovering at an ICU from a brutal early-morning-hours attack. According to the item, Gener was assaulted around 4 a.m. Friday January 17 after leaving a Midtown party. He was found and attended to on Seventh Avenue near 54th Street.

First things first. NYPD are asking anyone who may have witnessed the attack or aftermath to call Detective Enis, 18th Precinct, at (212) 767-8400. To expedite, callers should reference Case File #485.

Secondly, friends and colleagues have quickly organized a candlelight vigil; the gathering is set for tomorrow night, 6 p.m., at the corner of Seventh Avenue and 53rd. From the Facebook event page:

Randy Gener is an editor, writer and artist who has made a significant impact in the Filipino American and arts-theater community in New York and worldwide.

On January 17, 2014, he was brutally attacked in Manhattan, a few blocks from his home. He suffered brain trauma and is currently still in the hospital.

We, as New Yorkers, demand an end to hate violence in our city. We as LGBTQ folks, Filipino Americans, people of color and allies want to feel safe on our streets again.

Join us for a candlelight vigil to show your support to Randy and to proclaim to the world that hate violence will not be tolerated. Bring your own candles, bundle up and be prepared to march a few blocks. Please spread the word.

There’s also a page collecting donations to help cover Gener’s medical expenses. Outlets the reporter has contributed to over the years include the New York Times, the Village Voice, Crain’s New York and Time Out New York.

On the Facebook page, a growing number of folks are chiming in to indicate that they too, from New Jersey, Portland, OR and other locales will light a candle tomorrow night for Gener. FishbowlNY will do the same.

Update (January 26):
There has been much subsequent media coverage and Facebook discussion of this shocking early-morning incident. And if you read only one further strand of it, let it be this vigil poem – “A Cup of Stars” – published Saturday by playwright, actor and director August Schulenburg:

I worked with Randy back in his time at TCG [Theater Communications Group], and like so many of us now, I am wishing him a speedy recovery from the brutal attack… This poem is my candle lit for his speedy recovery, and towards the day these horrific acts of violence are a thing of the past.

Read the poem here.

Update (January 27):
Below is the NYPD sketch of the suspect, described as a Hispanic male, 20s, approximately six feet tall and about 160 pounds with short black hair. Again, the number to call with any sightings or information is (212) 767-8400 (Detective Enis / Case File #485).


Update (January 29):
Per NBC New York, a 24-year-old Jamaica, Queens resident has been charged with second-degree assault in connection with the January 17 Midtown incident.

Update (January 30):
The accused, via a criminal complaint, alleges that Gener hit a female pedestrian in the chest after she bumped him on the street and then threw a clutch purse at his head as the early morning sidewalk exchange quickly grew more heated:

Gener was arraigned Wednesday night on misdemeanor assault charges and released on his own recognizance.

[Leighton] Jennings, having witnessed the kick, jumped out of his car and kicked Gener in the stomach. He also punched the victim once in the face, sending him to the pavement.

[Top image via: Facebook]

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