Fa­ther of 12-year-old boy wounded in Wood­lawn pleads for end to gun vi­o­lence

Chicago Sun-Times - - TOP NEWS - BY MANNY RAMOS, STAFF RE­PORTER mramos@sun­times.com | @_ManuelRamo­s_

The fa­ther of a boy shot last week at a park in Wood­lawn gave an up­date on his son’s re­cov­ery Fri­day and con­demned the re­cent spree of gun vi­o­lence af­fect­ing young peo­ple.

John Shorter at­tended a prayer cir­cle at Mamie Till-Mob­ley Park, 6404 S. El­lis Ave., where his son, 12, was shot in the leg last week while play­ing with rel­a­tives.

Shorter, a Chicago Fire Depart­ment lieu­tenant, said he ap­pre­ci­ated the pub­lic’s sup­port. His son re­mains in “good spirit” and is now get­ting around us­ing a walker.

“I want to thank the Lord Je­sus Christ that my son is still alive be­cause this could’ve been tragedy and I could’ve been plan­ning a fu­neral,” Shorter said.

“A kid should be able to go to the park with­out wor­ry­ing about be­ing shot. That was the last thing that was on my mind when he came out with his rel­a­tives,” he added. “We need to stop the vi­o­lence.”

Last week the Chicago Po­lice Depart­ment re­leased video of sus­pects. The video shows mul­ti­ple men ap­pear­ing from a gang­way and shoot­ing a gun to­ward the park where the boy was play­ing.

“This [park] was named af­ter a woman who lost her 14-year-old Black son in 1955, and here we are today talk­ing about a young man who could’ve lost his life,” State Rep. Kam Buck­ner, D-Chicago said. “So what I am im­plor­ing the en­tire city of Chicago, all of my neigh­bors and my col­leagues, is to fig­ure it out.” Manny Ramos is a corps mem­ber in Re­port for Amer­ica, a not-for-profit jour­nal­ism pro­gram that aims to bol­ster Sun-Times cov­er­age of is­sues af­fect­ing Chicago’s South and West sides.

TYLER LARIVIERE/ SUN-TIMES

A Chicago po­lice of­fi­cer hands a bas­ket­ball to John Shorter on Fri­day at Mamie Till-Mob­ley Park where Shorter’s 12-year-old son was wounded in a shoot­ing.

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