San Francisco street renamed after attack victim Vicha Ratanapakdee

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SAN FRANCISCO — Nearly two years after his death, the city of San Francisco on Saturday renamed a street after attack victim Vicha Ratanapakdee. 

With blessings from Buddhist monks, Vicha Ratanapakdee Way was officially unveiled Saturday afternoon. 

San Francisco street renamed after attack victim Vicha Ratanapakdee
San Francisco street renamed after attack victim Vicha Ratanapakdee

CBS


The street, which connects Terra Vista Avenue and O’Farrell Streets in the Anza Vista neighborhood he called home, is the first in the state to be named after a Thai American. 

His daughter Monthanus Ratanapakdee said she was overcome with gratitude. 

“We want to remind future generations in memory for my father. He passed in violence and pain, and we want our future generation to stop violence, Asian hate,” she said. 

Vicha Ratanapakdee’s brutal death was captured in a surveillance video that went viral. It helped spark the anti-Asian hate movement across the country. He was violently knocked to the ground in an unprovoked attack during his morning walk in January 2021.

“Our culture — you know, Asian American — is scared to talk. They don’t want to go to report to police station. Like my mother, she’s scared. She doesn’t want me to go out and speak out in public,” said Monthanus. 

Still, she has been doing so to honor her father’s legacy and push for justice. She said she was inspired by the younger generation. 

“Mr. Ratanapakdee was a grandfather, Mr. Ratanapakdee was a husband. He was a father and simply he was one of us,” said actor and activist Daniel Dae Kim. “In him, I saw my own family. In him, I saw my own parents, who dressed like Vicha, loved to take walks in the middle of the day, in the country they love and call home. In short, I saw in him, all of us.”

Daniel Dae Kim was among several speakers, including city attorney David Chiu, San Francisco supervisor Catherine Stefani, and civil rights activist Amanda Nguyen.

“I just want to speak from my heart, it’s still painful but also I know that pain can be transformed into justice, and that’s what we’re here today to fight for, justice for Vicha,” said Nguyen, founder and CEO of Rise. “And also, justice for all of the people who’ve experienced anti-Asian hate.”

District Attorney Brooke Jenkins was also in attendance. 

Suspect Antoine Watson faces murder and elder abuse charges. His trial begins on Tuesday October 4. 

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