On October 13, 2009, my life changed forever. Tyesha was murdered by the father of her children. She was 21 years old and she was a mommy of two daughters, Koriona, two and a half years old, and Jae’Briona, just six months old. My granddaughters lost two parents, one to death and the other to a life in prison.
Tyesha was murdered in the state of Georgia, where there is a very high rate of domestic murder. She wanted out of a domestic violence relationship. She was preparing to move back to Kansas the morning she was murdered. She already had a protective order. She was at a friend’s apartment with another friend, who had come to help her pack and to say goodbye, while her two daughters were at their other grandmother’s house. He was waiting for Tyesha down the street, and he came through the back door, shooting her and her friend until she was dead and not moving. Her friend lay dead outside.
The father of Tyesha’s children had a felony record and had been convicted of domestic violence, so he could not buy a gun legally. He used a stolen gun. In the state of Georgia, it is not required to report your weapon stolen or require it be locked up.
Gun violence is devastating, and I take shootings personally. My daughter’s death has affected me in ways that have been so hard. I have channeled my pain into positive impact by raising awareness about gun violence. Tyesha’s beautiful eyes shone so bright in life, and I refuse to let them go dim. I Wear Orange for Tyesha.