October 4, 1987, I gave birth to my first child, Steven Latimer. Steven was a happy and loving child and grew up to be a very caring young man. Steven was a son, brother, father, uncle, nephew, grandson and friend to many. On October 2, 2011, I received the worst news a parent could ever receive. After leaving a night club with his friends, Steven was playing around and stumbled and touched a car.
Someone in the crowd confronted him and asked if the car was his, and Steven replied “no,” and the young man stated it was his car. A few words were exchanged, and Steven and his friends stated they weren’t looking for trouble, and they all just walked away. They went to the car, and as they were driving, the young lady driving the car Steven was in realized the person they had the confrontation with was sitting in a car they passed. The next thing they knew, the car began to follow them. As she continued to drive with the hopes of getting away from them, the person in the other car opened fire on the car.
Everyone in the car was hit, but unfortunately Steven’s injuries were fatal. Although it has been seven years, it still feels like yesterday. To honor Steven and to keep his memory alive I’ve established the Steven K. Latimer Memorial Foundation and hold an annual 5K – SKL Memorial 5K ~ Families Against Violence Run/Walk to raise money for kids who have lost a parent/guardian or loved one to violence. To date we have awarded over $9,000 in scholarships to students in Rhode Island. This is important to me because education was important to Steven. He left behind a daughter, and I want her to understand the importance of getting her education but to also remember her father. I hope that as she gets older, she too will want to keep his memory alive and fight for better gun safety laws. Everyday is a struggle to get up and out, but I know that Steven would want me to continue on living and making a difference in the lives of others. I’m sure he is proud of my my efforts.