total hearts received for Moments That Survive

Diontae Spencer

In memory of Clifton Williams

My father, Clifton Williams, was shot and killed in his barber shop on September 23, 2010. He was 45 years old. The shooter robbed my father in his shop, which was called Cliff’s Impressive Cuts. My Dad was always giving free haircuts to kids and people in nursing homes. He was a generous person, always talking and handing out advice.

I was an 18-year old freshman at McNeese State University when my Dad was killed. He was going to come and watch me play for the first time in college the following week against LSU. He always would say to me, ‘Can’t stop, won’t stop.’ That was his motto in life. Whatever you’re going at, when times get hard, don’t stop, you can’t stop. I try to live by that motto every day. Growing up, I was always the smallest guy. He’d say, ‘If that’s what you want to do, give it your all, give it 100 per cent.’ He was one of those guys, when times were bad, he was there to say those little things, to be encouraging.

I miss my Dad every day and always think about him before a game. Growing up in New Iberia, we were surrounded by senseless gun violence. I knew the person who shot and killed my Dad. We used to play basketball together. I feel like we have to reach the youth right now, because they are the ones who are making these mistakes and destroying people’s lives and their own lives, too. We can’t save the whole world, but if we can reach one kid that might change everything for that child.

Reacting shows support for gun violence survivors.