Remembering Ernesto ‘Xe’ Gonzalez Acosta, 1989-2013

Mazatzin speaks out to friends and family about the life of his son, Ernesto ‘Xe’ Acosta, at the corner of Hayes and Webster street on Feb. 16. (Leslie Calderon / The Guardsman)

By Sara Bloomberg

Friends and family of Ernesto ‘Xe’ Acosta gather around the corner of Hayes and Webster street with lighted candles to pay their respects on Feb. 16. (Leslie Calderon / The Guardsman)

At the end of a warm winter day, more than 200 friends, family and community members gathered at Alamo Square Park to honor

Xochitl Bernadette Moreno participates at the memorial, celebrating the life of her friend Ernesto ‘Xe’ Acosta at Alamo Square on Feb. 16. (Leslie Calderon / The Guardsman)

Ernesto “Xe” Gonzalez Acosta, who was shot and killed Feb. 10 in San Francisco near Hayes and Webster streets. He was 23 years old.
Xe was a City College student and helped organize the annual Mexica New Years Celebration held at Mission campus since 2008.

Incense wafted through the park, as Aztec dancers twirled to the sounds of flutes, drums and conch shells.

A flier in memory of Ernesto ‘Xe’ Acosta hangs at the corner of Webster and Hayes street on Feb. 16, the same location where he was found lying on the sidewalk, bleeding from a gunshot wound. (Leslie Calderon / The Guardsman)

As the sun set, they all walked down to the intersection of Hayes and Webster, with hands clasped around candles as the drummers beat down on their instruments at the front of the procession.

They gathered at one corner covered in flowers, then dispered themselves across all four corners at the intersection as police officers blocked traffic from flowing north and south.

Xe’s father, Mazatzin, recalled their last trip together to Mexico and their mutual reverence for the Aztec calendar.

“We went to Chichen Itza [in the Yucatan] on Dec. 21, so we were able to celebrate the galactic alignment,” Mazatzin said, as his eyes glistened with tears. “What was interesting to us was, that was the day 3 Serpent and my son Xe was born on the day 3 Serpent.”

Xe’s family invites the public to join them for the Mexica New Year celebration at City College’s Mission campus on March 11 from 6 p.m.- 12 a.m.

Aztec dancers raise their hands high, full of musical instruments and conches, as sage burns in the air, honoring the memory of Ernesto ‘Xe’ Acosta at Alamo Square on Feb. 16. (Leslie Calderon / The Guardsman)

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