Vigil held for Henry Street shooting victims

'It's too much': Prayer service and balloon release held for Henry Street shooting victims

Posted: Aug 12, 2018 12:12 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Candles were lit at a vigil on the corner of Henry and 10th Street Saturday as families mourn the death of one man and pray for the quick recovery of another.

Prosecutors charged Jessie Nelson, 35, in a shooting that killed Mack Jenkins, 29, and sent Deon Hernandez, 23, to the hospital Monday evening. 

More than 50 people gathered in the exact same location as the shooting. A prayer was offered, candles were lit, and just before the balloons were released, the victims' mothers spoke. 

"I'm thankful for the 29 years with my son in my life," Jenkins' mother Shelia said. "We still got a son, Deon, that's fighting."

Shelia Jenkins then passed the candle to the mother of Hernandez to speak. Many could be seen wiping away tears as the mothers paid respect to each other's pain.

"I'm so sorry for yours," Tammy Sollars, Hernandez's mother, said.

"And I'm sorry for yours as well," Shelia Jenkins said.

As the sun set over the neighborhood, blue and white balloons were released into the air. Sollars son is recovering in the hospital. She said he is paralyzed from the shoulders down and has a 1 percent chance of walking again. Hernandez is the oldest of her five children.

"He's head strong," Sollars, said. "That's what is helping him fight."

The event served as families and friends to grieve. Sollars said she hopes people learn from the incident.

“Put the guns down," she said. "Let it go. Whatever you have trouble with the next person just let it go. You never know what's going to happen. Just put the gun down. It's not worth it."

The Missing and Endangered Northwest Missouri and Surrounding Area group helped organize the vigil. The group waited in the wings of the event to provide any assistance the families needed.

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