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SAN MARCOS, Calif. – A North County community came together this week to honor a 20-year-old Armenian man who was stabbed to death last year while out on a walk with his dog.

San Marcos man Aris Keshishian appears with his dog in an undated photo. (Photo provided by Keshishian family)

The family of Aris Keshishian made it their mission to keep their son’s memory alive and to share his story. They were on hand with friends and elected officials Thursday for the dedication of “Gratitude Trail,” the new name of the perimeter of Discovery Lake — near where Keshishian lived in the Stone Canyon neighborhood — in his honor.

The tribute to Keshishian was approved in a 4-1 vote in December by San Marcos City Council.

“Our community really needs to move forward,” San Marcos Mayor Rebecca Jones said the night of the vote. “I feel very strongly that this will bring a healing element to our youth in San Marcos. A lot of people have been touched by this, in fact. I think many of our communities are grieving over this and the discussions with his family, they walked often at Discovery Lake and the trail.”

Keshishian was found mortally wounded Aug. 15, 2021 in a home in the 1100 block of Via Vera Cruz, the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department said. Deputies say he was stabbed more than 45 times when returning home from the walk and later was pronounced dead at an area hospital.

The suspect, Kellon Talib Razdan, was arrested a day later and charged with first-degree murder, jail records show. He’s currently housed at the George Bailey Detention Facility and is awaiting his next court date scheduled for May 25.

Investigators have not shared what they believe to be Razdan’s motive in the slaying, though Keshishian’s sister Adrineh Keshishian told FOX 5 that the two knew each other as former classmates.

“Nobody believes it,” she said. “Everybody’s questioning what the motive would be and how something like this could happen. My answer for that is that unfortunately in this life, the innocent suffer. There will never be an understanding about it, but the grace of God allows us to push through.”

Those in attendance Thursday wore red T-Shirts with the word “grateful” on them. They then walked the trail where Keshishian walked before he was killed in his neighborhood.