NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A woman who lost both her oldest child and husband in a shooting in the Katie Hill neighborhood in northeast Nashville Tuesday says their untimely deaths don’t seem real.
“I can’t compute in my brain that I have actually lost my husband and first child. I haven’t slept,” widow Brenda Hawkins told News 2. “It just doesn’t seem real.”
Brenda’s husband, Keon Hawkins and her 22-year-old son Kemontanez Armstrong were killed in a gun battle Tuesday morning as they exited a home they were visiting on Bessie Ave.
Hawkins, 32, died at the scene.
“Who wakes up and thinks something like that is going to happen?” Brenda tearfully said. ”To actually get to the scene and see my husband’s body lying there and someone says my son is at Vanderbilt. I get to Vanderbilt and I find out that my son is gone, too. It was just like a double-whammy.”
Witnesses said one, possibly two suspects, fled the scene. They still haven’t been captured.
Police said the shooting was not random but have yet to release a motive. PHOTOS: 2 killed in Katie Hill shooting
“Even when I woke up this morning, I still thought my husband was going to be right there beside me,” Brenda said.
She continued, “I’ve literally called my husband’s phone like 100 times, hoping he’s just going to pick up the phone and he’s not picking up. I just want them back. I just want my husband and my son back. I want someone to wake me up out of this dream.”
A small memorial has been set up outside the home where Hawkins and Armstrong were killed.
“I had to do something,” said the woman who lives in the home where the Hawkins and his stepson died.
The woman, who just identifies herself as Kathy, said it was tough to come back to the house after the shooting, adding her children are now safely elsewhere.
“They were with me inside when this all started,” she said.
Funeral arrangements have not yet been made for Hawkins or Armstrong.
“It’s two funerals – it’s just hard,” Brenda Hawkins said. “My pastor just keeps telling me to stay strong and that God’s got it – for me to just take it second by second, but those seconds feel like hours and hours.”
Brenda said she has a strong support system with her.
“My pastor has been here all day. She’s still here. My school friends have come in from out of town. My sister is here, my cousins are here,” she explained.
The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is urged to call Crime Stoppers at 615-74-CRIME.