MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) — Blackman High School’s graduation took place Thursday evening at the Murphy Center at Middle Tennessee State University — just one day after the deadly shooting that took the life of an 18-year-old.
Families of the graduates said the shooting was a senseless act of violence costing a young man his life.
“My son was friends with him, it’s just unbelievable, I couldn’t imagine if it was my kid,” said Shanna Odom, mother of one of the graduates.
While everyone’s guards were up Thursday night, families of Blackman High School graduates said they believe that kind of violence is rare in Murfreesboro.
“Of course, we are on alert and we are conscious of our surroundings, but we aren’t going to let it steal from our joy,” Odom said.
Reflecting on the good, Darlene Wilcoxson explained seeing her daughter cross this milestone was indescribable.
“We got her, she was a gift. She was two weeks old. She was foster, we have walked this journey with her so this is a very special night for us,” Wilcoxson said.
Thursday night — at a different graduation — these families offered condolences to the family of the victim, Sunny Gant, a life cut short, just a year after his own graduation.
“I think it was sad, I think it was a moment stolen from the graduates, from their families. It was their night and it was uncalled for,” Wilcoxson said.