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Fifty-one was the number of trans and non-conforming people killed last year, or so people thought.

Five more trans people were added to the list when their deaths went unnoticed until now.

The Human Rights Campaign keeps track of trans people killed every year, noting that 2021 was the deadliest year on record for the community.

This year, two Black trans women have already been killed in January.

Za’niyah Williams, 21

Za’niyah Williams remained unidentified for quite some time until her mother came forward, according to The Advocate. She was a Black trans woman.

“You were loved and will always be a part of me,” a cousin wrote. “Fly high you beautiful butterfly.”

A friend posted that Williams was “a very sweet and smart young lady and always ripped the runway when she dressed up.”

Williams died in a hit-and-run in Houston, Texas Dec. 20.

“Za’niyah Williams was a bright soul who at 21 years old had the world in front of her,” Tori Cooper, the Human Rights Campaign’s director of community engagement for its Transgender Justice Initiative, said in a press release. “It is horrific that her life was taken from her by an unknown assailant who drove off without a care.”

Nikki Turietta, 31

Nikki Turietta’s family is still in shock after she was shot inside her home in Albuquerque, New Mexico Dec. 31.

“It's heartbreaking. Heartbreaking,” Jen Struck, Turietta’s aunt, told KOB.

Turietta was a white trans woman who Struck described as a “free spirit” and has no idea why anyone would kill her.

“We want justice. We're desperate for answers. We want to know what happened,” Struck said.

Rubi Dominguez

Rubi Dominguez was a Latina trans woman who also died in a hit-and-run on July 16 in Arlington, Texas.

Monica, her sister, described her as “a happy, social, humorous person” who “made people laugh,” according to Telemundo.

Monica also called for justice and appealed to the driver to come forward.

“Make yourself responsible because it has caused great pain in my family, both emotionally and psychologically,” she said. “It’s something irreparable.”

Keeva Scatter, 34

Not much is known about Keeva Scatter’s life, a Black trans woman who was shot and killed in Baton Rouge, Louisiana Oct. 15. The HRC said they will honor her memory regardless.

“The epidemic of violence against transgender and gender-nonconforming people stole over 50 lives in 2021, and those are just the stories that we know of,” said Cooper. “The majority of cases were like Keeva’s, Black trans women, often victims of gun violence. We must work to create a society where Black trans lives are valued and are not cut short.”

Marina Caldera, 38

Marina Caldera was an amazing person who had the best personality and always called everyone on their birthdays, according to her family.

“[She] loved everyone, everyone [she] met loved [her],” Caldera’s brother, Noel, told KPRC 2. [She] was always happy singing. [She] was just a fun [girl] to be around.”

Caldera was shot to death in Houston, Texas Dec. 6. The police are still investigating her murder.

“We really just want to know what happened,” Noel said.


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