Marcus Haislip III had planned to spend Friday afternoon with his father, an uncle and another relative frolicking around at the PowerPlay entertainment center in Shawnee.
Across the state line, the 3-year-old’s mother and grandmother enjoyed an afternoon in Kansas City having their nails done and other pampering. It was an arrangement made by the boy’s father as an early Mother’s Day present to the two women.
But the afternoon of fun and indulgence never materialized.
As Marcus, his father and an uncle drove to 54th Street and Park Avenue to pick up another relative, a gunman on foot repeatedly fired into their car, police said.
A volley of at least 10 gunshots shattered the car windows and pierced the car’s interior, striking the three occupants.
Bullets struck Marcus, who had dreams of becoming a football player, in the head, neck and elsewhere. The boy’s father was struck in the upper body and the uncle was hit on his foot.
The incident was reported to police about 4 p.m. Friday as the car raced to Research Medical Center.
But by then it was too late. Emergency room workers pronounced Marcus dead.
No arrests have been made in the city’s 41st homicide of the year. Police said the suspect is a black male who was wearing a red hoodie and gray shorts at the time of the shooting. Anyone with information should call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS (8477).
Alicia Harris, Marcus’ grandmother, said she and the boy’s mother were getting their nails done when they received a phone call about the shooting.
“She heard a bunch of screaming and hollering,” Harris said. “We left the nail place and tried to get to the hospital as fast as we could.”
Relatives are now struggling with Marcus’ senseless and avoidable death.
“I’m hurt; I’m hurt because of my baby. He was only 3,” Harris said. “ I just want justice for my baby. It is what anybody would want. He was a baby and he didn’t get to live his life.”
“I can’t even find the words to say how I am feeling right now.”
Harris said she had a special bond with her oldest grandchild. Harris was in the delivery room when Marcus was born and cut the umbilical cord. Harris insisted that Marcus and her grandchildren call her “GG.”
“I didn’t want my grandkids to call me grandma,” she said. “He called me ‘GG,’ and I will never hear him say that again.”
Marcus wasn’t shy about telling everyone that he wanted to someday be a professional football player. Marcus got his first football when he was 1 year old, Harris said.
“He had dreams already, things that he wanted to do,” she said. “It is amazing for a 3-year-old to have something like that.”
Funeral arrangements were pending on Monday.
Marcus’ shooting death was one of several shootings that happened over the weekend.
Hours after Marcus was killed in a triple shooting, a drive-by shooter blasted several gunshots at a Kansas City house with four children inside.
There were seven people, including the children, at the house in the 5300 block of Garfield Avenue at the time of the shooting. None of them were hit by the gunfire.
“It needs to stop. I just wish it would stop, there’s been so much,” Harris said the recent gun violence. “My family is heartbroken and all we want is justice.”