MEMPHIS, Tenn. — What was supposed to be a holiday of hope and togetherness, has turned into a holiday of heartbreak after a 12-year old was killed in Orange Mound Christmas morning.
“He was a kind, sweet and innocent little boy, and he loved dancing. I never saw him mad or angry. He was just full of joy, full of life,” Doneshia Eddings said.
WREG spoke with the victim’s sister who said the family is desperate for answers surrounding this murder mystery.
“To lose a 12-year-old brother on Christmas… come on now,” Doneisha Eddings said.
We spoke to Doneisha Eddings just hours after her baby brother, Artemis Rayford was shot inside his own home early Christmas morning, just being a kid.
“[He was] playing a game, in the living room, playing a game,” Eddings told us.
Inside the family’s Haynes Street home just before 3 a.m. Christmas morning, Doneisha said she is now struggling with the moments after the shooting – when she learned her baby brother used the last of his strength to call out for his mother.
“When he got up he said ‘momma,’ and once he said momma, he just fell and collapsed. And she grabbed him, she caught him,” Eddings said.
The family told us, little Artemis tried to find comfort in his mother’s arms shortly before he died. Sadly, this is not the first time tragedy has struck this same family, in this same home.
“My older brother passed away. He passed away on the side of the house. Yep my oldest brother,” Eddings told us.
This tragedy further compounded, knowing several siblings witnessed all of it.
“My other sisters ran over here and came and got me. And when I went up in there it was just blood everywhere,” Eddings said.
The life of the most innocent of victims, cut short following a Christmas day killing.
“Words can’t explain the way I feel,” Eddings said. “They just need to stop this senseless killing. It’s not getting no better.”
Doneisha told us her baby brother was a student at Sherwood Middle and never met a stranger.
As far as the motive and the person who pulled the trigger, that is still part of this investigation.
If you know anything about this incident, you are urged to do the right thing and call CrimeStoppers at (901) 528-CASH or submit a tip online.