SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Twyla Smith is asking that the city of Shreveport come together in peace after a gunman's bullet took the life of her oldest grandson.
Investigators say a total of 36 shots were fired, judging by bullet casings left at the scene.
"Not a cold, not no rare disease this is somebody deciding that they can play God," Smith said. "Ask me yesterday if I was gonna get a phone call saying my 4-year-old grandson had got shot, I would have said 'Nah, that's not going to happen but today…' I'm living proof that you never know."
"She was just on her way to drop her friend off at a graduation party and was about to take the children back to the house when some vehicle just approached and started firing."
Smith said there were five shots fired into the car, one near the window she was sitting at, and the other the family believes is the final shot. That deadly blow struck Messiah Murphy in the temple, as his younger brother Pharaoh sat beside him.
"I don't know how to break it down to a 2-year-old that he'll never see his brother again. I'm sure it'll be ingrained in his memory for the rest of his life. I know it will in my daughters," Smith said.
After the shooting, Smith says her daughter drove the family to the nearest police station where a mother's worst nightmare was confirmed.
"She turned around and checked on him, and I'm pretty sure he was already gone before that moment ever even happened," Smith said.
Now, just hours before Mother's Day, Smith is asking that the community put an end to the violence so that no mother has to feel the anguish of losing her child.
"It's a problem, and it's not just my family, it's whose next.. if this doesn't stop I anticipate more funerals," Smith said.
A call to action she says will create some much-needed change.
"This city is not going to last much longer like this...it's just too much going on, its just incident after incident after incident, you can't ignore it, especially not when it shows up on your doorstep. Not like this."
Family members have set up a GoFundMe to help with funeral related expenses.