Mothers Trying to Protect Their Neighborhood Gunned Down in Chicago


Marissa Johnson, Entertainment Editor

The recent deaths of Chantel Grant, 25, and Andrea Stoudemire, 35, two women involved with a group called Mothers Against Senseless Killings were shot dead Friday on a South Side Chicago block where moms gather to help curb gun violence. This tragedy served as a grim reminder of the kind of violence that led them to participate in neighborhood activities organized by Mothers Against Senseless Killings. The anti-violence group launched five years ago following the shooting death of another young mother at the same corner.

Chantell Grant, 26, a mother of three, and Andrea Stoudemire, 36, who leaves behind four children, were gunned down as they patrolled their South Side neighborhood in an effort to deter the type of crime that claimed their lives, police said. An SUV was found abandoned nearby and police were working Tuesday to determine if it is the same vehicle involved in the shooting. Just before 10 p.m. Friday, a blue SUV rolled by 75th Street and Stewart Avenue, where MASK sets up shop, and someone fired shots into a crowd, Chicago police said.

The group began with moms “occupying” the corner, offering food and counseling for youth in response to violence in the community.The group has started a GoFundMe campaign aiming to raise $5,000 for a reward for information in the case. By Wednesday morning, it had raised more than $16,000.

The attack was the second drive-by shooting on the block in the past month. The night of June 25, a 23-year-old woman was wounded as she stood on the corner about 9 p.m., when a black vehicle drove by and someone inside opened fire, Chicago police said. She was shot in the face, back and leg but survived. There was no indication from police that the shootings were connected.