MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The family of Patricia Bryant, the Memphis grandmother killed in her yard by stray fire during a fight between girls in Frayser, honored her life tonight with a candlelight vigil.
The loss of Bryant has shattered this family.
They told us the gunman left behind a hole that even justice won’t fix.
“They robbed me,” said James Bryant, husband. “They robbed me.”
In this Frayser neighborhood, Bryant is known as the candy man.
Kids would always come to get candy from the man who rewarded them for good behavior and good grades.
Now, he has the role of a grieving widower.
“She was beautiful,” Bryant said. “She was wonderful. She was a great woman. She was all that and some more.”
Bryant’s wife, Patricia, lovingly known as Mrs. Pat, was shot in killed in her front yard Saturday by stray gunfire coming from a group of girls fighting down the road.
The entire thing was captured on Facebook Live.
Bryant said he heard the commotion in the street.
“I said ‘baby, come look at these fools out here,’” he said. “Which I should have never done. I should have let her stay in. I should have let her stay in.”
His beloved wife was holding their great grandbaby when she was hit.
Mrs. Pat died in his arms.
“Was she trying to block the bullet from him, or what,” said Latoya Cobbins, victim’s daughter. “We don’t know. We just know they both hit the ground.”
According to court records, 28-year-old Debra Prettie, one of the women involved in the fight called 36-year-old Darrell Peterson, who showed up with a gun and shot at the victims but instead hitMrs. Pat, which left a huge void in this family.
“She was the backbone; she was the muscle,” Cobbins said. “She was the muscle for everybody. She was everybody’s everything.”
The 55-year-old woman fought Sickle Cell since birth.
They say knowing she lost her life at the hands of a stranger and not the disease made it even more painful.
We asked what they’d say to those so eager to pick up a gun to solve their problems.
“If you don’t know how to shoot no gun, throw it away.”
“He hurt us,” Cobbins said. “He took something from us and we want to take something back from him. He’s got to pay for this.”
Peterson turned himself in Tuesday and was charged with second-degree murder.