Murder victim's legacy lives on in Christmas giving
A murder from 11 years ago is helping to feed families on Christmas Eve.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – A murder from 11 years ago is helping to feed families on Christmas Eve.
“It's all in remembrance of Shirley Ann Thomas,” said Toney Frank, an organizer of the Christmas Eve event.
Shirley Ann Thomas was murdered in her own driveway in December of 2004. Since then, her son and others have organized a toy drive every year in her honor. This year, the meal for needy families was a new way to remember her.
“One of the things she believed in was community involvement,” Frank said. “Taking advantage of your situation and helping others. And we've kind of just carried that on every year.”
Thomas' son, Philip, had just arrived home and pulled into the driveway of their home on Camden Avenue in South Louisville when two men approached him and tried to rob him.His mother and girlfriend came outside. It was the last thing Shirley Ann Thomas, ever did.
“My mother was shot and literally killed that night. I held her until her last breath,” Philip Thomas, Shirley Thomas’ son said.
Since then, two men have been arrested and are still in jail for Thomas' murder. Many vigils have been held for Thomas since her death but organizers say giving back is the legacy she would have wanted to live on. The hope is this Christmas Eve is just one of many to carry on that legacy.
“No matter what we have going on hosting events and our 9-5 jobs we've always made this a priority to make it happen and give back,” Frank said.
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