HOMEWOOD (KDKA) — The community of Homewood is still reeling after a fire, deliberately set, killed three people earlier this week.
The burned-out shell of the house at 7634 Bennett Street doesn’t begin to tell the story of the pain that fire left behind.
Friday night, family and friends of the three people killed in the fire — Sandra Carter Douglas, Shamira Staten and Staten’s 4-year-old daughter Chy’enne Manning — gathered in the street to remember, to share and to grieve.
“This represents the true face of senseless violence,” one man said. “Enough is enough. We’ve come to too many of these things here in Homewood.”
The victims were the daughters of the Homewood community and Friday night, that community — joined by Police Chief Scott Schubert and other officials from the department — came out to surround two families caught in a fight that was never theirs to claim.
“I’m just hurt. I can’t even say nothing right now. My heart is just…” Darryl Manning, Chy’enne’s father, said.
“We’re all going to get through it. We’ll get through it by the grace of God. Like I said, they’re with the angels,” Tamira Johnson, mother of Douglas and Staten and grandmother of Manning, said.
There were candles, teddy bears, balloons, tears and prayers as the crowd focused on the victims — not the two people charged with starting the fire, Martell Smith and Tiasha Malloy. They focused on the innocent victims who got caught in the wrong place at the wrong time.
“Nobody has the right to take any human life, let alone [the life of] a 4-year-old child,” a man said at the vigil.