Patricia Brown is a community activist in Chicago. Her 17-year-old daughter, Patrice, was killed by a stray bullet in 2007. On Friday night (May 16) she joined Don Lemon as we look deeper into this wave of killings of Chicago teens. We asked her to write about that fateful night.
August 24, 2007, is the day my world came to a crashing end. It was the day my daughter and I passed away.
When my daughter’s lifeless body was lifted up from the ground they picked me up as well. Everything the doctors did to save my daughter they did to me. The only sad thing is my daughter died three days later on August 27 at 2 p.m.
When I first heard that my daughter was shot, I was on my way home from bowling. My mother got a call that Patrice had been shot. I had to shock my own heart. That was the longest ride of my life. When we finally got to the house, there were police and people everywhere. I had a feeling that first ambulance I saw was the one that had my baby, but I saw another one down the street and I ran calling my baby’s name hoping that she was in that one. Hoping to see her before she was taken away.
The next time I saw my baby, she was lying in the hospital with a mouth full of things keeping her alive. Never in my wildest dreams would I have to say goodbye to one of my children. I was ready to grow old with my children. I was looking forward to being called grandma or mommy.
My daughter had her whole life to live for. She was going into her last year of high school. She had jobs lined up. She knew what college she was going to. She knew what she wanted and she was going out to get it.
Until that night. A night I will never, ever forget.
To learn more and find out how you can help stop the violence, contact Diane Latiker, founder and president of Kids Off the Block.