Many gather to honor Daunte Wright’s life while LA memorial is vandalized

"Did Daunte have respect for the cop?" said one vandal

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Community organizations and residents of Brooklyn Center, MN gathered Saturday at the site of Daunte Wright‘s death to mourn their loss and celebrate all that’s not yet lost.

The spot where Wright was shot turned into a healing space of prayer, art, music and food for those grieving his death and suffering the trauma induced by the loss of many other Black lives, reported CBS Minnesota (WCCO).

“I think we have to show up even when we’re tired, even when we’re distraught, even when we’re emotionally stressed. When we lose our brothers and sisters in this fight, we have to show up,” said Sha Cage, local artist and activist.

Another memorial mounted in Wright’s memory in Los Angeles was vandalized on Thursday night as parties were filmed destroying posters and flowers honoring Wright. Some of the vandals were identified as Trump supporters who participated in the January 6 Capitol riot, according to a story by Newsweek.

Newsweek also reported that one of the dissenters filmed dismantling the vigil was heard saying “We could have done worse, you’re lucky I’m just blowing out the candles.” To which the witness recording said “Oh we’re lucky? You have no respect for anybody.” Then the candle-blower responds “Did Daunte have respect for the cop?”

Simultaneously, two other events held in the spirit of fellowship and healing reportedly occured in St. Paul at 38th and Chicago, the intersection where George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer on May 25 last year.

Read More: Mom of Daunte Wright’s child speaks out: ‘I’m just really hurt for my son’

Reverend Al Sharpton will deliver the eulogy at Wright’s funeral, scheduled to take place on Thursday at New Salem Missionary Baptist Church in North Minneapolis, as reported by WCCO.

“He had a 2-year-old son that’s not going to be able to play basketball with him. He had sisters and brothers that he loved so much,” said his mother Katie Wright Tuesday on Good Morning America, according to the Associated Press.

Daunte Wright
(Credit: Wright Family)

He was “a lovable young man,” said his aunt Naisha Wright, and “His smile — oh, Lord — the most beautiful smile,” she continued.

Jonathan Mason, who worked as a youth development specialist and mentor at Edison High School in Minneapolis, one of the three high schools Wright attended, remembered Wright as friendly and quite popular.

“He was a charismatic kid. He would joke with you, and he was so witty,” he said. “He was one of those kids that everybody looked up to.”

Mason shared what he recalled of his mentoring sessions with Wright, who was a celebrated player on the school’s freshman and junior varsity basketball teams. “He said, ‘I want to be an NBA player, I want to be a fashion designer, I want to be a business owner,’” Mason recollected.

Read More: Kevin Durant leaves Nets’ game in Miami with thigh injury

Mason was also reminded of conversations they shared regarding the procedure Black men should follow when approached by the police. “I talked about if they pull you over, make sure your hands are on the top of the steering wheel, don’t reach for anything,” he said. “He would always say, ‘Man, why we gotta do all that just for people not to kill us?’”

According to Wright’s mother, who was called by her son as he was being detained, he told her the police pulled him over because he had air fresheners hanging from his rearview mirror.

This booking photo released by the Hennepin County, Minn., Sheriff shows Kim Potter, a former Brooklyn Center, Minn., police officer who is charged Wednesday, April 14, 2021, with second-degree manslaughter for killing 20-year-old Black motorist Daunte Wright in a shooting that ignited days of unrest and clashes between protesters and police. (Hennepin County Sheriff via AP)

Kim Potter, the officer charged with second-degree manslaughter for Wright’s death, is reportedly believed by the city’s police chief to have accidentally discharged her weapon, mistaking it for her Taser. The two have both resigned.

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