NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Metro police are on the lookout for a man who wears an eye patch.
Police said around 4:50 p.m. Saturday, the man jumped out of a black car in the 1800 block of DB Todd Jr Blvd and opened fire with a rifle. 31-year-old Rasheed Walker was struck.
The suspect got away and Walker would later be pronounced dead at Vanderbilt Medical Center.
As word of Walker’s death spread, so to did a profound sense of loss that stretches from Metro Public Schools to Vanderbilt Medical Center and points in between.
News 2 learned that Walker was thought of very fondly at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.
Medical professionals told News 2, the man who almost died, in 2016 made it a point to come back to the trauma unit three times a year to spread his inspiration and hope with others in pain.
Vanderbilt Trauma Medical Director Oscar Guillamondegui called the news of Walker’s death devastating.
“He had a big heart. A great soul. A hard worker. I cant say enough good things about him,” Guillamondegui said.
“We lost a good one, for sure,” Melissa Smith, Trauma Program Manager echoed.
Smith said the loss of the Walker will be felt well beyond the confines of Vanderbilt Medical Center.
“I think he did it because his heart is so huge. Not just for us in the trauma unit, but he gave back to the community.”
In March 2016, Walker was in a horrific head on collision that almost took his life.
He spent weeks in the hospital enduring eight surgeries and rehabilitation.
Walker recovered and left the hospital only to come back multiple times a year to give back to others in pain.
According to Vanderbilt officials, Walker, often accompanied by his mother, returned with gift bags and messages of inspiration for the patients.
Walker regularly returned three times a year, on his birthday, on the anniversary of his car crash,
and around Christmas.
Melissa Smith said, “On each bag he had a scripture and each was different and he would bring 250 plus bags each time and just to see him hand them to the patients and let them hear his story, was incredible. he did it because his heart is so huge. not only for us in the trauma unit but what he gave back in the community. he had multiple organizations, the Nashville pro am the hustle strong, helping kids play youth sports who could not afford it, that’s just how big his heart was. and I cannot say enough about him how incredible a man he was.”
Dr. Oscar Guillamondegui said, “I think our community lost an incredible hero Saturday night.”
Rasheed Walker worked for ten years in Metro Public schools as a paraprofessional who helped teachers with exceptional education students.
Monday, K.C. Winfrey, principal of Cora Howe School said, “We are crushed and in shock over this tragic loss to our Cora Howe family. Rasheed was a young man who consistently gave back to his community, and all of our lives are better for having known him. I will miss him and our interactions together so much.”
Police told News 2 the shooting was not random. No motive has been released. If you have any information, call Crime Stoppers at 615-742-7463.
This is a developing story. Stay with News 2 and WKRN.com for updates.