More than 100 mourners gathered Wednesday evening to remember a 3-year-old boy killed by gunfire and to plead to the rest of Kansas City for help in finding out who pulled the trigger.
Amorian S.L. Hale was shot dead while he slept in his bedroom on Sunday morning.
Ever since, family, friends and strangers have struggled to deal with the grief and anger that followed his sudden, violent death at the hands of somebody who peppered his 67th Street and Walrond Avenue home with roughly two dozen bullets.
Police, despite ongoing pleas for tips, had yet to make any arrests in the case Wednesday night.
“If anybody out there (sees) anything or if they hear anything, just call it in,” Monee McKinney, the boy’s mother, said after the vigil.
McKinney said she has experienced “a lot pain, a lot of anger and a lot of hurt.”
“My baby is gone, he was my firstborn. … There is no love like that,” she said. “I’m mad because whoever did it, they didn’t have to do it. … They didn’t have to do that to my baby.”
Amorian enjoyed being a big brother to his siblings, McKinney said.
“My son was a very caring person,” she said. “He loved everybody.”
Earlier during the vigil, a parade of speakers expressed outrage at the killers and anger at those who know something about the shooting but have not stepped forward.
“This cannot become the norm,” said Damon Daniel, the executive director for the Ad Hoc Group Against Crime, which canvassed the neighborhoods before the vigil. “There’s nothing normal about losing a 3-year-old child.”
Other speakers prayed, sang gospel hymns and called for an end to the violence in Kansas City’s urban core.
“He was a real special boy,” said Christopher Hale, Amorian’s father. “Whoever did this, I just hope they come forward because you all hurt a whole lot of people. Somebody knows something. That was an innocent baby.”
As the vigil concluded, Daniel asked that children in the crowd step forward. Daniel said it is the responsibility of the adults to protect the children.
Anyone with information on the shooting is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS (8477).