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March planned to protest Black on Black gun violence

13 year-old Lamar Norman III, was shot and killed in December of 2021. (Courtesy: Lamar Norman Jr.){p}{/p}
13 year-old Lamar Norman III, was shot and killed in December of 2021. (Courtesy: Lamar Norman Jr.)

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Joyful and fun, it doesn't seem possible that someone like Lamar Norman III could be gone at such a young age.

"He was 13. I don’t really like to talk in past tense though, I feel like he’s still here," said his father Lamar Norman, Jr.

And seeing him in home videos, you can see why, an exuberant leader just starting his journey.

But all that came crashing down two months ago outside Savanna Landing.

"I took a lot of like pride into making sure that I was trying to raise the best boy I could," said Norman.

Gunned down at 13 years old, allegedly by another teenager.

"That hit too close to home, I have a 13 year-old son," said community activist Richard Baxter.

He was so disturbed by the violence that he's organizing a march.

"The Black on Black Respect March for Safer Black Communities is a protest," Baxter said. "And we’re protesting Black on Black gun violence."

"These are children killing children," said Akano Bey. "Who are they getting the guns from? Who’s teaching them to be out here in this lifestyle?"

For Lamar's father, the grief of losing his son has come with a shadow of blame.

"It's unfortunate and I just hate it because it makes me look like I was a bad father, you know, like I didn’t have my kid under the proper guidance and like I didn’t have him, you know, with the proper knowledge and that’s not true at all," he said.

"Safety and violence are impacted by so many things - environment, access to opportunities," said Krystal Reyes, chief resilience officer for the city of Tulsa.

Data from the city shows a huge disparity when it comes to homicides.

"Black Tulsans are nearly three times more likely to be victims of homicide than white Tulsans," Reyes said.

"We’re taking this accountability on ourselves in building a mentoring program out of this march. This is not going to be a one and done," said Baxter.

Keeping the memory of a young man alive, with hope that from the tragedy of his death comes change.

"One of the biggest things with this is you have to be careful who you call your friends and your associates and who you're hanging around," said Norman.

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The march is planned for Thursday, March 3, from 4 to 6 p.m., starting at Solid Foundation Preparatory Academy at 4025 North Hartford Avenue. For more information, click here.


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