I’ve got to admit it. It’s pretty difficult to write about the First 60 days of Gun Violence in 2014 America when so many stories of irresponsible gun owners, stories of innocent kids being shot, stories of teens playing with and having unprecedented access to firearms. Why is it that so many gun tragedies around the country. In this post, The Gun Violence Holocaust Part 2: The First 60 days of Gun Violence 2014, 20 year old South Carolina State Student Brandon Robinson who was shot and killed. We have 20 year-old Michigan State University Student Dominique Nolff. 20 year-old Virginia Union University Track Star Karon Lee. Imagine sending your child off to college? Then getting a call that your 20 year-old child was shot and killed? The Persons accused in the shooting of Robinson and Nolff are both 19 year-old young black men. I’d almost put the house (I don’t own a House), but if I did own a house? I would bet that Karon Lee’s killer was also a young black male in his late teens or early twenties. Who’s responsibility is it to stop this trend: Local, State, Federal? Is this why President Obama introduce the “My Brother’s Keeper” Initiative at the White House last week? We also have 15 year-old Kevin Barbee. Kevin Barbee was shot and killed by a 17 year-old friend when a gun he was playing with accidentially discharged. Barbee was shot two days before President Obama was due to visit his Nashville, Tennessee High School. The White House called school official to ask if they wanted to cancel. But the school didn’t want to cancel. Neither did Barbee parents. The President met with Barbee’s parent before he spoke at the High School. In this post. you’ll see the President “mention” the Barbee tradegy.
Another tragic story was that of 17 year-old George Holland of Providence, Rhode Island. Holland was a football player at Central High School. Holland was shot over some sort of Facebook Beef. A 18 year-old, 18 year-old, 19 year-old, 21 year-old, and a juvenile are being held in his murder.
Brianna Benlolo 20 and Tyler Johnson 25 where working in a Skateboard shop called Zumiez near Baltimore, Maryland when 19 year-old Darion Marcus Aguilar came in with a shotgun.
9 year-old Jan Marcos Pena was shot by his 14 year-old brother on a Friday afternoon in the Mattapan section of Boston. The same neighborhood 28 year-old Teasia Montgomery was shot and killed a week earlier.
There a little trend there:Young people and guns. Where does a 18 year-old or 19 year-old or 20 year-old or even a 14 year-old get a Firearm? Especially when these kids live in some of the poorest circumstances in America? When will we as an society, tackle these public safety issues?
This is why I call this Series: The Gun Violence Holocaust. I think instead of just doing to Series? We are going to have weekly and Monthly reports!
From the The State:
“Brandon was a fine young man who was paying his way through college. All he wanted to do was play football for the university,” Bulldog football Coach Buddy Pough said. “We are at (a) loss for words right now.”
20 year old Brandon Robinson was a South Carolina State University Student. A 19 year-old is accused of shooting Brandon on January 24th.
20 year old Brianna Benlolo was working at Skateboard Shop at the Columbia Mall on January 25 with 25 year-old Tyler Johnson when 19 year-old Darion Marcus Aguilar came to the mall with a shotgun. Darion shot and killed both Brianna and Tyler before shooting himself.
According to the Baltimore Sun:
When he heard the news that there’d been a shooting at the Zumiez store at The Mall in Columbia, Abhishek Rishi posted a panicked message hoping for a phone call from his friend.
His worst fears were soon confirmed. Brianna Benlolo was dead.
“She was a very caring, heartwarming person,” said Rishi, who knew Benlolo because both had worked at the mall. “She never said anything bad about anybody. She was just one of those people you wanted to be around. She was just genuinely happy.”
Brianna left behind a 2 year-old son.
Also shot at the Columbia Mall was 25 year-old Tyler Johnson.
NBC Washington on Tyler’s Uncle George Sliker:
“It’s a parent’s worse nightmare. You don’t realize it until you’re in the middle of it,” Johnson’s uncle, George Sliker, said of his nephew’s death. “He was just unfortunately at work, which for kids these days is a good place to be.”
Sliker decribed his nephew as shy, a good kid, who was volunteering with an organization in Mt. Airy that helped people addicted to drugs.
“The people there thought a lot of him, you know. They thought that this was his calling even.”
On January 26th, Boston’s Julien Printemps, 22, was killed in a spate of violence that saw 4 murders in three days. Printemps mother, Gloria, had this to say according to the Boston Globe:
Gloria Printemps, the mother of Julien Printemps, spoke softly as she recalled her son as a good man who had no recent problems with anyone. “All I know is, my son is a kindhearted, loving person,” she said.
He recently worked in a temporary position at UPS during the holidays, she said, and also worked at a shipyard in Quincy.
He had dated the young woman killed on Rosewood Street in the past year, she said, but the two were not involved at the time of their deaths.
Printemps said she hopes the gun violence in the city will stop, “not only for my son, but for all the mothers out there going through this.”
Next is Teasia Shante Montgomery of the Mattapan, section of Boston. I actually went to Teasia’s Funeral. Teasia’s brother is a friend of one of my cousin. Teasia was a friend of Julien Printemps. Here’s my post on Teasia Funeral. Teasia’s 9 year-old son Jaron gave a heartfelt goodbye to his mother that no 9 year-old should have to give.
As 9 year-old Jaron Montgomery was in Everett at 11:30 saying his goodbyes to his mother. Another Boston 9 year-old from Mattapan, the same Boston neighborhood were Jaron’s mother was gunned down, Jan Marcos Pena was about to be shot and killed by his 14 year-old brother.
The Boston Globe interviewed some of 9 year-old Jan Marcos Pena’s family friends and classmates:
In the parking lot, Pedro Nova paused with his daughter Lea Nova Rodriguez, 9, who was a classmate of the boy.
“Janmarcos was a kid full of love, full of happiness, and always had a lot of energy,” she said. Whenever a friend was sad, she added, Janmarcos would always try to comfort them, saying, “Aww, it’s OK.”
Pedro Nova said that he grew up with Jan Marcos’s father in the Dominican Republic and had been happy that their children were growing up together, too.
‘Their hearts ache, and so does the heart of the city of Boston.’
“It’s hard, because he was a very, very lovely kid,” Nova said of Janmarcos. “You see the funeral home, how many people? It’s going to be real full.”
The Boston Globe on another of 9 year-old Jan Marco Pena’s classmates:
10-year-old Ashley Ramirez, said she attended the same program at the Boys and Girls Club as Janmarcos.
“He was really, really sweet,” she said before heading into the funeral home. “He was funny, and he used to tell a lot of jokes.”
Inside the wake, mourners packed the room, sitting in chairs or crowding around the casket, weeping audibly. One woman sighed, saying quietly, “Ay, amor” as she wiped tears from her face.
A bunch of mylar balloons in the shape of hearts and stars hung over the child’s open casket.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time,” read a note in an arrangement of red roses and white flowers topped by a picture of the curly-haired boy.
Laminated cards, with Janmarcos’s photo and a prayer written in Spanish were handed out. “Help me from the dangers of the world. . . . I want the way I live my life to make you smile,” the prayer read in part.
9 year-old Jan Marco Pena’s 14 year old brother is being held on charges of involuntary manslaughter on $50,000 bail.
On January 31st, 20 year-old Michigan State University Student Dominique Nolff was shot and killed near the campus of MSU.
Newchannel 3, CBS News, WWMT, West Michigan spoke with Dominique Nolff’s mother:
“Nolff’s mother tells Newschannel 3 her son was a good kid and it’s tragic his life ended in gun violence. will always be proud of him,” said Melissa Nolff Hurt
February 4th, 17 year-old Providence, R.I. teenager George Holland Jr. was shot and killed. Holland was a Football player at Central High School. Five people are in custody for his murder, an 18, 18, 19, 21 year-old, and a juvenile.
The crazy thing is George Holland’s mother is in jail for 25 years for stabbing his father to death in October 2009 according to the Providence Journal:
On Wednesday, at the Adult Correctional Institutions, Rufo was told that her oldest son was dead. As an inmate, she will not be allowed to attend George’s funeral. The Department of Corrections will arrange a special private viewing with the funeral director, said spokeswoman Susan Lamkins.
George Holland’s Central High School Football Coach Peter Rios had nothing but good things to say about the kid who played center on his team:
His coach said that George “lived and breathed football,” and he’d planned to have the teen try out for the All-Star game.
“He was a team player. He had leadership skills and he would take the younger kids under his wing,” said Coach Peter Rios. “He would help other people.”
George didn’t talk about the tragedy in his family. He spent time with his team and hung around with the coaches, talking football.
“We enjoyed his company as much as he enjoyed ours,” Rios said. “He was just a great kid. I didn’t see this coming at all.”
Rios’ voice became choked. “It’s hard for me to talk right now,” he said. Rios said they are probably going to retire George’s No. 55.
A couple days before President Obama was set to visit McGavock Comprehensive High School, 15 year old Student, Kevin Barbee was shot and killed by 17 year-old Kaemon Robinson.
The White House called School official at McGavock High School to see if they wanted to cancelled. The School and Barbee parents wanted the President to come to the high school.
ABC News on the President’s visit to McGavock High School:
NASHVILLE — President Obama traveled to a Nashville, Tenn., high school today on the final leg of a post-State of the Union tour that took him across four states in two days. And here, with a recent shooting tragedy hanging over the school, the president once again played the role of consoler-in-chief.
“I wanted to come here today because I’ve heard great things about this high school and all of you,” the president said at McGavock Comprehensive High School on Thursday. “But I also recognize the past couple days have been hard and have tested people’s spirits. Some of you lost a good friend.”
“So I wanted you to know that Michelle and I have been praying for all of you in the community, and I know that all of us are sending prayers to those families that have been so directly impacted; this has been heartbreaking,” he said.
Kahron Lee, 20
According to the Epoch Times:
Kahron M. Lee has been identified as the Virginia Union University student killed in an off-campus shooting.
Lee, 20, was a sophmore at the school who majored in computer information systems and lived in the Birches.
He was found shot in the apartment complex around midnight on February 24, which is located behind the university, reported WRIC.
“It’s hard to believe that I will never see him again; that’s just the reality of the situation and it’s hard to accept that,” said VUU student Sabrina Brisbane. “I don’t know, I mean I wish I could have turned him around, brought him with me. I wish he would have made a different step; it’s messed up.”
The university’s police chief, Carlton Edwards, released the following statement: “The Virginia Union University family is shocked and saddened at the senseless murder of Virginia Union student Kahron M. Lee. The shooting took place last night on Graham Road, in the vicinity of the Virginia Union campus. Mr. Lee was a 20-year-old Computer Information Systems major. He was a well-liked person who was active in the campus community. “
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