Story Summary

2 men killed in South Shore neighborhood

Two people were shot and killed early this morning in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood.

74-year-old Willie Cooper was killed around 4:45 Thursday morning.

30 minutes later, another shooting erupted and 41-year-old Eric Davis was killed.
Police are investigating.
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Chicago police believe there’s a connection between two fatal shootings on the South Side.

They say the same two men are responsible for killing 74 year-old Willie Cooper and 41 year-old Eric “Guitar” Davis during attempted robberies.

Cooper, a retired CTA worker and church deacon, was killed back on December 19.

Davis was found about a half hour later just a few blocks away.

Parishioners at a South Side church gathered today to remember their deacon who was murdered last week.
The mass at Saint Philip Neri Catholic Church on 72nd St honored 74-year-old Willie Cooper.
Cooper was found dead of multiple gunshot wounds in a car early Thursday morning.
Police say it appeared to have been a carjacking attempt.
Cooper’s friends recall him as inspirational.
Funeral services are planned for Thursday.
Chicago police have no one in custody for the killing.

Two people were shot and killed early this morning in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood.

74-year-old Willie Cooper was killed around 4:45 this morning.   Arriving to pick up his best friend, Cooper was inexplicably ambushed by gunmen who opened fire on Cooper’s Chevy sedan.
30 minutes later, another shooting erupted just blocks away claiming the life of another motorist, 41-year-old Eric Davis.  Davis who suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the torso and neck.

Davis was known on the Chicago music scene as Eric “Guitar” Davis.  On most nights you’d find him on stage or practicing is Riverdale home or recording an album.

Davis may have written about being a trouble making man but his wife says that doesn’t come close to describing her 41-year-old husband and father to six children

His wife, Leslie Bell,  says Eric loved to joke around, play his music, loved his children and loved to travel.

Davis’s wife says he was excited to have recently signed to music label.

Cooper was a retired CTA worker and charter bus driver.  Neighbors and friends remember Cooper as a pillar of strength in the community.  He was a longtime deacon at St Philip Neri Catholic Church. Cooper ministered to those in need, in particular on wayward youths.

Police are not saying if the two killings are somehow connected to the same suspect or suspects.  Family of both men say they have no idea why anyone would target a church deacon and a blues man whose career was just taking off.

Two people were shot and killed early this morning in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood.

In a hail of senseless gunfire, 74-year-old Willie Cooper was killed around 4:45 this morning.   Arriving to pick up his best friend, Cooper was inexplicably ambushed by gunmen who opened fire on Cooper’s Chevy sedan.
30 minutes later, another shooting erupted just blocks away claiming the life of another motorist, 41-year-old Eric Davis.  Davis who suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the torso and neck.

Neighbors and friends remember Cooper as a pillar of strength in the community.  He was a longtime deacon at St Philip Neri Catholic Church.  A retired Chicago Transit Authority driver Cooper ministered to those in need, in particular on wayward youths.
“He would proclaim the Word every Sunday,” Pastor Thomas Belanger said.  “He would deliver words of optimism  but also challenge. He liked to challenge the young men to extend themselves and go after their dreams.”
Chicago detectives are investigating the possibility that the attacks may have been the work of the same gunmen.
 

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