CHICAGO (CBS) — There was another enormous act of Christmas generosity today. Among the recipients: three boys who were shot in what has traditionally been a safe haven in any community.
Four hundred families were on the receiving end of a bounty: bikes, electronics, shoes, clothes.READ MORE: COVID-19 In Illinois: More Than 3 Million Residents Fully Vaccinated, But Cases And Hospitalizations Still Up Significantly Over Past Month
“They help out so many people, and they always think about the children,” Carrie Davis said.
Christmas gifts collected and distributed by the People’s Church of the Harvest. Thirty years they’ve been doing it.
“We can’t really afford stuff that the children ask for, and then the church calls, and they say, ‘We got something for your children,’” Davis said.
Among the children on this weekend before Christmas: three boys who were shot in the West Garfield Park neighborhood in January. Cierra Mobley is the mother of two of the boys.
“Almost a year has gone by and people still have us in their hearts,” Mobley said.
On Jan. 16, they were waiting for haircuts at the Gotcha Faded barbershop, when two men walked in, walked back out, and fired through the window.READ MORE: Preparation Work Begins In Jackson Park Ahead Of Fall Groundbreaking For Obama Presidential Center
The barbershop is traditionally a haven for spirited fellowship.
“The barbershop, when I grew up, was a sacred place when we went there; and wealso got guidance from the barber,” Chicago Police Deputy Chief Ernest Cato said.
Five people were shot, including the three boys. Two were critically wounded. Eleven-year-old Lorenzo Matthews suffered arm, back, and stomach wounds.
“Just getting a haircut,” his uncle, Chris Williams, said at the time.
Eleven months later the boys stood strong; themselves Christmas gifts, said Pastor Michael Eaddy.
“Thanks be to God that they are still here with us,” Eaddy said. “We want them to know that the community loves them. We want them to know that we are praying for their successful futures, because these are our best and brightest.”MORE NEWS: Bell-Ringing Ceremony Honors Chicago Firefighter Edward Singleton
Walter Jackson, 30, of East Chicago, Indiana, was charged with five counts of attempted first-degree murder in the shooting. He is being held without bond at Cook County Jail.