Two teens killed by gunfire in separate incidents memorialized at joint wakes

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Posted: Friday, August 8, 2014 9:44 pm

SARASOTA, Fla Mourners waited in line to get in the door at Chambers funeral home. They came out to remember Justin Ates and Teria'le Rawls, two teenagers gunned down in separate incidents about two weeks ago.

Teria-le's step-grandmother wore a shirt to honor the 17 year old.

"She was always a pleasant beautiful girl who was always respectful. Sweet girl, very responsible," said Beatrice Brown-Snipes.

Beatrice hopes this tragedy will lead to an end to violence like this in the area.

"I'm hoping we'll take a look at what happened and try to resolve it another way instead of violence and guns and all that. We want peace more than anything," she said.

Somebody else who wants peace is Raven Hardy. She was friends with the other victim, Justin Ates. They had just talked a week before he passed.

"Justin Ates was an old friend of mine. We actually grew up together. When I heard the news I was greatly hurt. So it inspired me to write this," Hardy said.

She wrote a column in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, titled "Why do blacks kill blacks?"

"Over and over again and I'd like to just instill a desire in our people to want to change in our communities," she said.

Changing the communities is exactly what Sarasota County Commissioner Carolyn Mason says can happen.

"With these two incidents people are just fed up and they want it to end so I think people will be willing to do what's necessary to help it out," Mason said.

Separate funerals are scheduled for Saturday.

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