A look back at moments Albuquerque came together in 2022

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – As we look back on 2022, there are plenty of positives and negatives that took place in New Mexico.

We’re focusing on two times the community in Albuquerque came together, two examples that Mayor Tim Keller gave in a recent conversation.

2022 brought Albuquerque closer to normal life with the COVID-19 pandemic calming down. One welcomed sight was huge crowds at the 50th Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.

“We delivered, we executed on a great fiesta and that was awesome for our city, and it lifted all of us up,” said Mayor Tim Keller. 

People from all around the world visited the Land of Enchantment those two weeks, but it was the community of Albuquerque that showed its true colors during the fiesta.

“Who would of thought I would be in the rail yards and see like Darth Vader inflating inside the rail yards,” said Keller. 

After a few thunderstorms rolled in during the fiesta, the community – without question – joined together to dry off balloons and help in any way they could.

“One thing our administration’s shown, and our city shows, is like we come together in our time of need, and we really can move mountains. That’s a fun example of that, but I actually want to leave you with another one that’s more serious,” Keller said.

The other example?

“We have members of our Muslim community who are afraid to participate in everyday activities that they should never be afraid to do,” said Keller. 

A heartbreaking time in the city where three Muslim men were shot to death within a two-week span, and police announced the murders were connected. 51-year-old Muhammad Syed was arrested and charged.

With a city on edge before Syed was arrested, the public’s help was largely needed.

“We got tips and we found that car, and whether it was the FBI or the state police, we all worked together,” said Keller. “We brought clarity at least to what happened and that’s something you rarely see in cities.”

Through the year, whether it was dealing with tragedy or coming together to help those in need during a classic New Mexico event, Keller believes the community truly stepped up in these times.