My name is Denise, and I start my story with my first loss. I lost my brother, Robert Edwards, to gun violence. Masked men went into the home where he was visiting and attempted to rob him and a friend; one of the gunmen shot him dead. He was working on getting himself situated and had just come home, around Christmas 1991. He was killed a few days later.
Next was my niece, Terrianna Holcombe. She was only 21 when she went to see what was going on with her boyfriend’s brother, who had gotten into an altercation at the corner store. One of the men involved decided to leave and come back shooting him and my niece with a round to the head. She had all her life ahead of her and not the shooter; she had to spend the next 17 years paying for a poor decision.
The next is my son, Mtundu Nangila Vanterpool, murdered by a so-called childhood friend. His murderer will be sentenced on March 7, 2022. He broke into the home where my son and his fiancé were sleeping and shot my son three times. My nephew was shot in the hand days after.