KOMOMO, Ind. (WISH) – In Kokomo, the school community came together on Tuesday to remember one of their own who was shot and killed over the weekend.
Nearly 100 people, many of them teenagers, came together to remember LeMarcus McGraw.
His mother was also there. She gave them a lesson in forgiveness that they’ll never learn in a classroom.
“I forgive you young man, I forgive you with every ounce in my body, I forgive you. I’m here for you,” said Kaynia McGraw-Hendrix, LeMarcus McGraw’s mother.
But she didn’t stop there.
“I just want to say, to the mother of the young man, I am here for you, reach out to me. I don’t want to hate, I don’t want to be revengeful. It takes so many muscles to be negative, when you’re already filled with so much energy to be positive,” said McGraw-Hendrix.
The vigil occurred in the alley behind the Village Pantry on the Jefferson Avenue. It was the same place where McGraw was killed. The message wasn’t just mourning McGraw, but taking action to correct their own lives.
“You guys are 15, 16, 17, 18, 19 (years old) take it right now, learn. learn right now do not let LeMarcus’ death be in vain,” said Alonzo “Zo” Smith, and administrator at The Crossing, an alternative school for at risk youth.
McGraw went to The Crossing and Smith was working with him when he was killed.
Smith also worked with Kaliel Rucker who Kokomo police said confessed to the crime.
Smith said they’ll only get through this by working together.
“If you come to the crossing I’ll talk to them and I’ll let them, the one last thing that Mr. Zo wants to do is put his collar on and have to bury one of my students and here I am again,” said Smith who is also a minister.
“We can’t keep losing our kids. It ain’t supposed to be like this,” said McGraw-Hendrix.
Police said the shooting was the result of a drug deal. They also said Rucker confessed after they found his gun.