CHICAGO — While many families are stocking up for Thanksgiving feasts with their loved ones, some are hurting knowing the people they want at the table won’t be there.
There’s no question this has been a tough year for a lot of people, but one group is hoping to bring a little positivity to two families who lost children to gun violence.
Catherine Brown’s 12-year-old son Demetrius Townsel, Jr. was shot and killed in Gary, IN in May. His twin brother was in the car with him and tried to save him on the way to the hospital.
“My baby’s gone. I pray for him. I want justice for him. I miss him so much — I wish I could hold him,” Brown said.
Tracy Holmes’ 8-year-old daughter Dajore Wilson was killed on Chicago’s South Side in September when someone shot into the car she was riding in. Today would have been her 9th birthday.
“I still want justice for my daughter. I’m going to get justice for my daughter,” Holmes said.
The organization I’m Telling, Don’t Shoot and Pete’s Fresh Market surprised these families by treating them to a grocery shopping spree ahead of Thanksgiving.
“We try to do the best things we can for them, to have all the good things for Thanksgiving,” Pete’s Market General Manager George Dremonas said.
Hoping to be a bright spot in a difficult year, the group released balloons for Dajore’s birthday.
“I wasn’t supposed to be having a balloon release, I wasn’t supposed to be crying – if I do it was supposed to be tears of joy,” Holmes said.
Two families were brought together in pain and gratitude.
“You have so much love out here somewhere a lot, you have a lot of love, you just don’t know it. You have a lot of love out here in this world,” Brown said.
Both Demetrius and Dajore’s murders remain unsolved. Anyone with information is asked to call the police.