Family members remember victims of Troy homicide

December 29, 2017 06:49 AM

Family members of the four people killed in a basement apartment on Second Avenue in Troy are speaking out Thursday night. They’re looking for answers and justice.

"We were supposed to spend Christmas together,” said Shakira Symes, sister of victim Shanta Myers. “So when I got a phone call on Tuesday and they said Shakira did you see the news, I said no what's on the news."

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Symes she had been trying to get a hold of her sister for three days. When she heard four bodies had been found, she didn’t want to believe it.

"I thought it was something like a freak accident, like a carbon monoxide, it was a basement apartment like I thought somebody left the stove on, it gets cold,” said Symes.

15-year-old Isaiah Smith, whose mother and two siblings were killed, said his family was the life of the party. His brother who was killed, 11-year-old Jeremiah or “JJ” Myers, was loved at the Troy Boys and Girls Club. His family said he wanted to be a firefighter.

“Everybody knows who JJ was,” said his brother Isaiah. “Everywhere I go he was right there, to the store he'd be right there even if I told him not to go I see him right behind me, he was the definition of my shadow."

5-year-old Shanise Myers is described as a stubborn little girl who loved to play with her dolls.

“The thing about this girl, I loved about her, she liked to be in everybody's business, but that was her personality,” explained cousin Khalif Coleman.

Coleman also said 22-year-old Brandi Mells, who was his aunt’s girlfriend, had a love for children.

"She was so great with kids,” added Coleman. “This girl was so beautiful with kids and she loved them the way any parent would and she didn't have kids."

36-year-old Shanta Myers is remembered as a sweet, loving mother who had a talent for cooking.

"She'd always offer to make these big astronomical pans of empanadas or fried chicken,” said Symes.

So far no arrests have been made in connection to the murders, but the family is pleading for anyone with information to come forward.

"Everybody in this community is responsible to do their part,” explained Symes.”You have no idea how many details they may already have and that small detail that you think is too small to make a difference might by the piece to the puzzle."

A GoFundMe page has been set up for the family to pay for funeral services and help Isaiah. It will also help provide mental health services to children and families in the community.

Friday from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. the Troy Boys and Girls Club along with Troy City School District will offer grief counseling at the Troy Middle School Auditorium.


Emily De Vito

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