We use cookies to provide some features and experiences in QOSHE

More information  .  Close
Aa Aa Aa
- A +

Editorial: Two Simeon students, 15, slain hours apart. Will their deaths finally wake this city into action?

1 11 11

So many times after a young life is felled bya bullet, Chicago weeps and agonizes — and then returns to the slumber of inaction.

Will the deaths of two 15-year-old Simeon Career Academy High School students, gunned down Tuesday within a span of four hours, finally rouse this violence-numbed city into tacklingthe scourge of gun crime? Can we find, at this desperate hour, the collective resolve?

Jamari Williams was standing outside a bank at a strip mall in the South Side’s West Chatham neighborhood when two people fired at him, then stood over him and continued firing bullets into his body, the Tribune reported Wednesday. Kentrell McNeal was in a car in the Hyde Park neighborhood when gunmen fired at the vehicle, shooting Kentrell in the head. A 14-year-old boy in the car was also shot and wounded.

Kentrell belonged to an anti-violence group and was “a role model to the other boys,” said the group’s director. Jamari dreamed of playing football and “really planned on that leading to bigger and better things,” said the Rev. Donovan Price, a community activist who accompanied Jamari’s family to the hospital. “Dreams, you know, that kids have.”

There are two lenses with which to view these horrible, senseless killings — first, through the prevalence of guns in the hands of young men who kill, and second, through the lives and actions of the shooters themselves.

In a two-part series this week, the Tribune showed how guns that make their way across state lines become the means to destroy lives and escalate the ceaseless toll of street violence that ravages Chicago day after day. Reporters Jeremy Gorner, Annie Sweeney and Rosemary Sobol examined how guns stolen during a break-in at a firearms shop in northern Wisconsin ended up in Chicago, and were traced to at least 35 shootings, three of them homicides. One of the firearms, a 9 mm Glock........

© Chicago Tribune

Get it on Google Play