Richmond mother talks about loss of her son


"I've lost a lot of nephews, right there. And I never broke, I never did, even when my son died, Freddie," said Gracie Lee, the mother of a murder victim.

Now 61-year-old Lee is holding back the tears, again, after her 37-year-old son, Vashon Lee, and a female acquaintance were gunned down and killed. Another woman with them was critically injured at an apartment complex in unincorporated North Richmond. In all, Lee says she's lost two sons and four nephews to street violence.

"I don't understand it... this killing. It seems like we always losing," said Lee.

Police say just 45 minutes before the double homicide, a man in his 20s was shot in the 200 block of Gertrude Avenue not far away. He's in critical condition and police believe the shootings are related.

"Because of the proximity of the locations and because we've had problems in the past with North Richmond and Central Richmond," said Richmond Police Lt. Bisa French.

Aside from her struggle to fight back her tears, Lee says she's fighting cancer.

"It's in my brain and unfortunately there's no operation for that," said Lee.

She doesn't know how much longer she has, but Lee says she'll continue holding back her tears, even though she's quite certain more young people will die in the streets in Richmond.

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