Monday, November 17, 2008

Shrine for Karon Shannon

This neon-bright shrine to Karon Shannon, is in the 1200 block of Simms Pl NE Washington DC, in the very troubled Trinidad neighborhood.

The grey mist of the rainy day made the somber contrast between the bold glowing colors of the shrine and the tragic event that it marks, unusually poignant to me. A shining melancholy heart poem; misery, prayer, memory, and grief made visible, for all passersby to see.

From the DC police website:
At approximately 7:32 pm on Sunday Oct 19, 2008 officers from the 5th District responded to the 1200 block of Simms Place, NE, to investigate the possible sounds of gunshots. Upon arrival, officers located a juvenile male suffering from apparent multiple gunshot wounds. The victim was transported to an area hospital where he was subsequently pronounced dead at 8:23 pm.

The decedent has been identified as 17-year-old Karon Shannon of the 1300 block of Orren Street, NE.

A second victim, a 15-year-old juvenile female was also located & transported to an area hospital with an apparent gunshot wound. The identity of that victim is being withheld at this time.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008, 18-year-old Deangelo Johnson, a District resident from NE, was arrested for the murder of Karon Shannon. He was charged with 2nd Degree Murder in the homicide of Karon Shannon.

Shrine for Drevon Proctor

This shrine to Drevon Proctor is at the corner of Chesapeake St & Southern Ave. SE, Washington DC.
This is from DC police website:
"On Saturday, August 9, 2008, at approximately 1:35 am, members of the 7th District responded to the 900 block of Southern Ave, SE for the report of a man down. Upon arrival, officers located 15-year-old Drevon Proctor, of the 1200 block of Southview Dr, in Oxon Hill, MD, suffering from an apparent gunshot wound to the body. He was taken to a local hospital and pronounced dead."
According to a column in the Washington Post by Colbert King:
"...the 15-year-old DC. homicide victim [was]... under the court-ordered supervision of the DC Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services."
Another kid, just gone...

Permanent Street Memorial, 15th & T St NE

I found this well-maintained shrine, unusual that it is formal, permanently placed and constructed of engraved stone, in a small traffic island at the intersection of 15th & T Streets NE, Washington DC. It is very near an elementary school.
It honors:
Jerome "Chip" Belle- 8/30/78 - 2/14/96 (who died on Valentine's Day, just 17 years old)
LeRon A. Perkins - 2/7/81 - 12/19/95 (14 years old)
Steven Miller - 1/2/79 - 11/30/96 (17 years old)
"Save the Children. Stop the violence."

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

LaDonta Longshore "Tell Juju wat up. See ya RIP"

This unusual and heartfelt memorial is erected near the spot where LaDonta, aka Donta, Longshore was murdered this week.

from the Washington Post, Metro section, p. C3, November 9, 2008:
"... DC Police said LaDonta Longshore, a 9th grader at Dunbar High School was one of the youngest people killed in the city this year... he was found about 10:30 PM Monday [11/3/08] behind his apartment building in the 1200 block of Brentwood Rd NE... He died Wed. [11-5-08] in a hospital. The shooting is under investigation. Relatives said the teenager was popular, friendly, & fond of music & electronic games... His mother, Crystal Longshore, said she had 'no understanding' of why he was shot' 'None at all.'"
He played with a basketball group with the Brookland Union Baptist Church.

The shrine was spread all along a blank wall behind the apartment, with lots of magic-marker grafitti messages added, including the cryptic "Tell Juju wat up. See ya RIP"

Evidence of the candlelight vigil mentioned in the paper was present. I briefly met one of his teen cousins at the site. I may be misreading things, but he seemed primarily interested in the fact that news of the shooting had made the papers.

Shrine #2 to James Kilgore

This is the shrine erected for James Kilgore by his family, located in the 1400 block of Montana Ave. NE, Washington DC.

Another, smaller, shrine built a half-block away in the 1500 block of Downing Ave NE, is on the site where he was killed.

Shrine #1 to James Kilgore

This memorial for James Kilgore, located in the 1500 block of Downing St. NE, Washington DC, is on the spot where he was killed, according to a neighbor I spoke with.
This is one of two shrines to Mr. Kilgore within a block. His family built another, larger, shrine, "with more bears, on a big tree" around the corner on Montana Ave NE, where he lived.

The neighbor told me firmly that Mr. Kilgore had been "a good guy."
Now all that's left are some bears, bottles, pictures, memories, and a cross.


Shrine to Bernard Holmes

Shrine for Bernard "Bert" Holmes, 35, killed in a liquor store parking lot in the 3500 block of Wheeler Rd SE, Washington DC, of a gunshot wound to the body at 4:22 PM. He died in a nearby hospital at 5:09 PM. He lived in the 700 block of Congress St SE.

While photographing, a childhood friend of his spoke wih me, and related that Mr. Holmes left behind a wife and two sons, about four & thirteen years old. There was to be a candlelight vigil on 11/8/08, and his funeral was held on Monday 11/10/08.

The family is very distraught. His friend told me nothing anyone could do would ever justify killng someone. Amen.

I returned after the funeral and photographed new objects that had been left in homage, flowers and cigarette packs mainly, that had been placed at the gathering over the weekend.

There is currently another shrine standing within sight distance of Mr. Homes shrine.