Nedra Bloodsaw struggled to keep her composure as she stood at the same spot where her son was killed. She never knew she could feel the pain of losing a child. It was her biggest fear, she said as she fought back the tears.
That fear was realized when she lost her son. "I understood how anybody who lost a child, how they feel. I instantly felt all their pain," Bloodsaw said.
She is still haunted by the events that transpired just four years ago, when she was forced to rush to the hospital after realizing that her 17-year-old son, Christopher, had been the victim of gang violence in Inglewood.
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Christopher had been on his way home from high school track practice that Jan. 16 day. "That was his life," said Stephanie Macey, Christopher's sister, "being an athlete and wanting to do better for himself."
But that day was different. Shots rang out just three blocks from the safety of his doorstep.
Bloodsaw remembers arriving at the hospital and looking down at what had become of her son. "There he was, lying there, hooked up to tubes and everything, totally unconscious," she recalled.
He would survive for only three more days. "On the 19th, we had to say goodbye," Bloodsaw remembers.
Four years later, police are no closer to solving the murder.
"We expect better from law enforcement here in Inglewood," said Christopher's uncle as he stood surrounded by family members who had gathered Tuesday afternoon to remember the young life lost to senseless violence. "I don't think they did anything."
But Inglewood detectives contend they've followed every lead. They say, however, that no one has come forward with the tip to lead to the killer.
That's what's so frustrating for Monique Palmer, another of Christopher's sisters. How could anyone in an area surrounded by apartments and so near to a hospital not know anything about her brother's killer?
Bloodsaw is equally frustrated, not just about her son's killer, but about the violence that continues to tear communities apart. "It's destroying our communities; it's destroying our mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers," she said.
This mother, who carries the pain of her son's absence every waking moment, knows nothing can bring him back. Only one thing can bring her closure.
"Turn yourself in," she said, pleading to a killer who still remains at large. "Give us closure. Let my son's soul rest. Let my soul rest."
The city of Inglewood has now issued a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction.
Anyone with information is asked to call detective Michael Han, of the department's homicide division, at 310-412-5246. Anonymous tipsters can also call 888-412-7463; when calling this number, they should refer to Inglewood Police Department report No. 14-448.