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Shondell Browne

There is a saying that when a mother loses a child a part of her dies and from there on she is crippled. So it is for Shondell Browne who suffered in silence while gunmen killed her 12-year-old son during a brazen attack at her McDoom home earlier this month that also left her fighting to stay alive.

Her recollection of the day is as sharp as if the incident happened yesterday and her pain, fury and shock are the same. But most of what she remembers that day Shondell is trying to forget. She wants to forget because the image of her smiling son Kevin Browne on his way to the bedroom after taking a bath still haunts her.

That moment was the last she shared with Kevin and had she known of the events which were to follow, Shondell said, she would have asked him to just stand there and she would have stared at him for a few seconds more.

Two weeks after she was discharged from hospital, the young woman who also received life-threatening gunshot wounds, agreed to do this interview. Though she professed to be okay, one could sense that everything was not quite all right. She was seated in a chair outside her mother's home on the East Bank Demerara and her right hand, which is in a cast, was resting on the ledge of the concrete porch.

Shondell Browne has had two surgeries since the shooting and had been hospitalised for a considerable period of time. She took three bullets and as a result suffered damage to the liver and intestines and lost a kidney.

With the morning sun on her face and her other son, a busybody toddler, rubbing against her leg she flashed a smile and said, "I can do this just ask me the questions." She was convincing, so it was put to her that she could start from wherever she wished.

Hesitating just a little as tears filled her eyes, the grieving mother, victim and survivor began to relive the day it all happened.

Stabroek News