He said he stomped on Lance's head and then others in the group jumped on him — "Joe, Teddy, Burger, Bean, Fry, Tater, and Pork Chop." Later, Lance was shot.

Detective Hammel asked Monroe, "You mentioned… a rumor that [was] going around the neighborhood. Who was the name that you heard as a rumor that shot, who shot uh, Lance?"

Monroe replied, "everybody say Q."

Quinton Davis was charged that year in Lance's death and in another killing in the city. He was convicted in both cases, and is serving a sentence at the Maryland Correctional Training Center in Hagerstown that runs until 2069.

Monroe was later found face down in the first block of N. Commerce St., suffering from gunshot wounds. He died at Maryland Shock Trauma Center.

Lance's death was the 154th homicide of 312 in Baltimore that year. To many, the victims' names are insignificant, forgettable, but each held meaning to someone.

Dana Evans had envisioned a life with Lance. They met at Walbrook and dated until his death. "He liked to crack jokes and what not," she recalled.

Shortly before Lance died, she found out she was pregnant.

She said Lance liked children and was excited to be a father. When they got the first sonogram photo, he ran around showing everyone.

"He always talked about having his own place," she said, adding that she was looking forward to the two of them settling down and raising their son — whom she named Lance.

"I had plans of us together," she said. "It was difficult with no father and then being a single parent."

She now lives in Baltimore County and her son, who goes by T.J., is 15 — nearly the age of his father when he was killed.

Several weeks after Lance's death, Chung, the photgrapher, was at police headquarters with a reporter who was interviewing homicide detectives. Up on the white board, in red marker, Chung, recognized the name Tate.

A detective told him the teen had been killed in a recent gun battle.

Months later, Sun photographers picked their favorite photos of 1997 for a year-end feature. Among them were scenes of the final game at Memorial Stadium, firefighters reviving a small dog after a rowhouse fire, and the weather. Chung settled on Tate's photo, which had not yet been published.

"I was protective of it," he said. But after learning that Lance's life had ended so soon, he felt the photo should be published, now that it could not negatively impact the teen's future.

"Things have changed over the years but there's still a lot of black people in situations where their choices are really limited, where their neighborhoods are ruined by loss," Chung said. After Lance's death, he felt the photo held even greater meaning.

"Even though it's hard, it's still the truth. Sometimes it's good to put the truth out there. That was my intent when I ran it," he said. "It spoke to something larger than me, larger than Lance, larger than Cook."

The photo appeared Wednesday, Dec. 31, 1997. Anger welled up inside Deborah Tate at the sight of the photo that would provide a lasting image of her son, but she was too busy grieving to worry about it. And she had two new grandsons to tend to.

She never thought the photo would appear years later in "The Corner," HBO's series about the residents of Baltimore's gritty, crime-ridden neighborhoods. She recalls that a relative phoned and told her to change the channel, and once again the image popped up of her son, lying on the sidewalk, eyes fixed on the officer's gun.

And again, years after his death, a relative posted the photo on Facebook, where Lance's son saw it. "I didn't want my son to see that picture," Evans said.

Neither she nor Tate sees the photograph as iconic, just sad. To Tate, it doesn't represent anything remarkable about the city or its greater problems of violence.

"It's everyday living," she said of the scene.

Although she relives the image each time she passes that corner, she doesn't plan to move from her home — it's full of better memories of Lance.

jkanderson@baltsun.com

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