On Saturday January 21st, 2011 a birthday gathering was held on the corner of 17th and Morgan Avenue North for Quantell Braxton who would have been 15 years old on January 20th had he lived. Quantell was murdered this past summer at the age of 14, shot dead while playing.
The day was cloudy and bitterly cold as the wind whipped around us giving no reprieve to comfort after being spoiled with extremely warm weather this year in Minnesota.
3-year-old Terrell Mayes mother Marsha was also present. Terrell was also shot and killed by a stray bullet while inside what should have been the safety of his own home the day after Christmas.
The crowd was small, but for those present it was emotional. The pain still raw as the grief still constant as tears flowed from eyes of those in attendance.
While I did not hear RayJon Gomez name mentioned, he also needs to be thought of as this young 13-year-old child was also killed in the streets as his funeral had been held the same day as Quantell Braxtons. His homicide also still not solved.
While a couple of mainstream news media outlets were present, no representation from the Black press, activist, politicians, occupy the hood members, non-profit leaders, citizen journalist such as the UpTake, neighborhood organization reps excluding Todd Heintz who seems to have become extremely involved and for that I say thank you seemed to be among the crowd. Again, I have to ask myself why?
It seems that these mothers have only one another, and a few friends and family to lean on at a time when so many others are using them for there own self-purpose. Those that claim to lead and represent once again were MIA.
View some of the event below.