Those at vigil remember Kendrick Smith, a victim of fatal shooting

Lakeisha Smith, the mother of Kendrick “Rocko” Smith, struggles to hold back tears while trying to read a poem she wrote for her son who was the victim of a deadly shooting last summer. A vigil was held for Smith on Tuesday a few blocks away from where he was killed.

Those at vigil remember Kendrick Smith, a victim of fatal shooting
August 11
07:00 2016

Photo by Tevin Stinson



A candlelight vigil was held in the parking lot of the Belview Recreation Center on Tuesday evening to celebrate the life of Kendrick “Rocko” Smith, a 22-year-old black man who was shot and killed a few blocks away from where the vigil was held last year.

According to reports, police were responding to a noise complaint at a house party at a home located at 1017 E. Devonshire St. As they arrived, police heard gunshots and the crowd quickly began to disperse. After securing the scene, Smith was found dead from gunshot wounds in front of the home by officers with the Winston-Salem Police Department. During the vigil, more than a dozen people gathered to light candles in honor of a life that was taken much too soon.

Following prayer, Pastor Curtis Friday of the Love Church, located in Winston-Salem, gave words of encouragement to Smith’s family and friends in attendance. Friday said, “Although I know it will take some time to heal the pain, I just want the family to know that God has your back.

“Just lean on him. Have confidence in God and he will be the one to comfort you through all the trials and tribulations you are going through.”

Smith’s mother, Lakeisha Smith, then read a poem that she wrote following her son’s death. While struggling to hold back tears, she thanked everyone for being by her side while she continues to deal with the lost of her oldest son.

“I want to thank everyone that knew my son and has been by my side every step of the way,” said Smith. “Without you guys, I never would have made it because this has truly been the worst year of my life.”

While reflecting on his life, Smith’s younger brothers, Brandon and Zyrah Smith, said Kendrick was the type of person who got along with everyone he came in contact with. They both mentioned he was also a good father whose life was centered around providing for his three children.

“He was a loving man who cared a lot about his family,” said Brandon. “It has been a rough time without him, but I have to stay strong in memory of him. I know that’s what he would have wanted.”

Zyrah said, “Although it has been hard, it makes me feel good to see the people he touched come out and celebrate his life.

“Even though he is gone, it’s good to know that people still care.”

To wrap up the vigil, Bishop John Huntley urged black men to become role models and take responsibility for their communities. He said now is the time for black men in the community to take young men and boys and lead them in the right direction.

“It’s time we take responsibility for our own communities,” he continued. “More than anything we need role models. Take these young men by the hand and show them the way and let’s put an end to all this violence.”

About Author

Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

Related Articles


Featured Sponsor

Receive Chronicle Updates

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.



More Sponsors