GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Monroe Center through downtown Grand Rapids is now named for native Breonna Taylor.
In October, the Grand Rapids City Commission approved designating Monroe Center from Division to Monroe avenues as “Breonna Taylor Way.” A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the honorary name change was held on Friday.
“Hopefully when they walk down Breonna Taylor Way, you feel her spirit. When you walk this street, be kind to people,” said Tawanna Gordon, Taylor’s cousin.
Taylor and her boyfriend were awakened by police officers trying to serve a late-night warrant at their Louisville apartment in March. Her boyfriend fired on the officers, thinking they were intruders. The officers fired on him as well, hitting and killing Taylor.
Taylor’s death sparked outrage, protests and amplified the push for more recognition of the racial bias in the U.S.
Though she was living in Louisville at the time of her death, Taylor grew up in Grand Rapids. Several protests were held in West Michigan in her memory, calling for police reforms.
There are nine other special designations like this in the city.
The designation doesn’t change the name of Monroe Center. But people can now see “Breonna Taylor Way” under the normal green street signs.
At the ceremony, the family also thanked the city of Grand Rapids for their efforts, saying it’s a small victory for social justice.