Silent March Through Downtown Chicago Marks City's Deadliest Year in Decades

PHOTO: Residents, activists, and friends and family members of victims of gun violence march down Michigan Avenue carrying nearly 800 wooden crosses bearing the names of people murdered in the city in 2016, Dec. 31, 2016 in Chicago.PlayScott Olson/Getty Images
WATCH Silent March in Downtown Chicago Against Violence

Hundreds of people marched silently in downtown Chicago on Saturday, carrying white crosses for each person killed in the city this year.

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A spike in homicides this year has made 2016 the city's deadliest in nearly 20 years. Authorities say more than 760 people were killed in Chicago in 2016, up from the fewer than 500 homicides in the city last year.

According to crime statistics from the Chicago Police Department, a shooting has occurred every day in the city from February 2015 to December 29 of this year.

As the New Year approaches, Rev. Michael Pfleger, who organized the march, said he hopes the visuals of the demonstration along Michigan Avenue will encourage others to take action to prevent further violence in 2017. The two-foot-tall crosses, which were built by Aurora resident Greg Zanis, each bear the name of a person killed this year.

PHOTO: Residents, activists, and friends and family members of victims of gun violence march down Michigan Avenue carrying nearly 800 wooden crosses bearing the names of people murdered in the city in 2016, Dec. 31, 2016 in Chicago. Scott Olson/Getty Images
Residents, activists, and friends and family members of victims of gun violence march down Michigan Avenue carrying nearly 800 wooden crosses bearing the names of people murdered in the city in 2016, Dec. 31, 2016 in Chicago.

Among the victims is 17-year-old Elijah Jones, who was gunned down on December 6 in Chicago's Humboldt Park neighborhood. Jones' grandmother walked in the march Saturday holding a cross with his name, according to ABC station WLS-TV.

PHOTO: Melva Pratt carries a cross as she marches with other residents, activists, and family members of victims of gun violence down Michigan Avenue, Dec. 31, 2016 in Chicago. Scott Olson/Getty Images
Melva Pratt carries a cross as she marches with other residents, activists, and family members of victims of gun violence down Michigan Avenue, Dec. 31, 2016 in Chicago.
PHOTO: The Rev. Jesse Jackson (L) and Rev. Michael Pfleger carry crosses as they march with other residents, activists, and family members of victims of gun violence down Michigan Avenue, Dec. 31, 2016 in Chicago. Scott Olson/Getty Images
The Rev. Jesse Jackson (L) and Rev. Michael Pfleger carry crosses as they march with other residents, activists, and family members of victims of gun violence down Michigan Avenue, Dec. 31, 2016 in Chicago.

The crosses will be placed in an empty lot on the city’s South Side following the march against violence.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.