In the months after 22-year-old Tyrone Ray was gunned down in Northeast Baltimore on Labor Day, his family — including his grandfather, Del. Talmadge Branch — struggled to cope with the killing.
Branch says he never expected the bloodshed common in some Baltimore neighborhoods to touch his family. Ray had been coaching football to help young people stay out of trouble, working as a longshoreman and taking classes when he was shot at a convenience store in Belair-Edison.
Six months later, Branch still can’t bring himself to go into a 7-Eleven.
Ray’s mother, Chanel Branch, wondered: If her son couldn’t escape the violence, how can other innocent young people?