On the site of his fatal shooting, mourners seek justice for Deshaun McKinzy at vigil

Calls for justice rang out at a Monday evening vigil for 29-year-old Deshaun McKinzy, who was fatally shot last week in Kansas City.

McKinzy was found with fatal gunshot wounds in the parking lot of the Walgreens at 3845 Broadway Blvd. around 3:30 a.m. on June 16, according to police. About 50 mourners braved triple-digit heat and gathered outside the pharmacy Monday to remember McKinzy at the site of his death.

The vigil was hosted by KC Mothers in Charge, an advocacy group supporting family members of homicide victims. As cars of well-wishers filled the Walgreens parking lot, members of KC Mothers in Charge moved the vigil against the wall of the store, after finding used needles scattered by the curb.

Police believe that a large group of people had been gathered in the parking lot when the shooting happened early Sunday, the Star previously reported. A second man was taken to the hospital shortly after the shooting with non life-threatening injuries.

“This young man didn’t get a chance,” KC Mothers in Charge founder Rosilyn Temple said. “He was not out in these streets. He was just having a good time.”

McKinzy’s mother, Neatrice McKinzy, wept softly as she talked about Deshaun, who loved fishing and was close to his sisters.

McKinzy’s death was the 70th homicide reported in Kansas City this year, according to data collected by the Star.

“My son was a star,” Neatrice McKinzy said. “He was never a troublemaker…he was just a people person.”

Temperatures reached 100 degrees during the vigil for McKinzy, with a heat index of 105 degrees. But Samaysia McKinzy, Deshaun’s sister, was cool and composed as she called for progress in the investigation of her brother’s death.

“Every time he called me, I was there with no questions asked,” Samaysia McKinzy said. “And I will not get no sleep until we figure out who did this to my brother.”

Temple urged the crowd to come forward with any information they may have about McKinzy’s death, which is still unsolved, according to the Kansas City Police Department.

She also spoke about the prevalence of Black-on-Black homicide in Kansas City. For several years, Missouri has had the highest Black homicide rate in the country.

Deshaun McKinzy was Black, as was Temple’s own son, who was fatally shot in 2011.

Family members and friends shouted out their love for McKinzy as they released blue, silver, black, red and white balloons above the Walgreens.

As Temple led the group in a prayer for peace, McKinzy’s sister Glenisha carried a portrait showing the 29-year-old against a calm blue sky.

“He was a loner by choice,” Glenisha McKinzy said. “Y’all broke my heart, and we need justice.”

As a final heart balloon slipped into the sky, a tow truck began circling the Walgreens parking lot, scattering the mourners as quickly as they had assembled.

Services for McKinzy will be June 30 at Serenity Funeral Home, 1101 Bannister Road. Visitation begins at 1 p.m. and a memorial service is at 2. McKinzy’s family is asking that mourners avoid wearing memorial “RIP” T-shirts.