The Daily Grind Video

**UPDATE** Wed. 1.45pm

The family needs our support to pay for Kevin’s funeral.  PLEASE, PLEASE send any donations via paypal to — no donation is too small…the wake is tomorrow and the funeral is Friday.  We thank you for supporting Kevin’s family during this very difficult time.


He stood motionless at the front door. The smell of chicken, pizza and soda filled the living room of this Queens one family home. Family members sat wherever they could find room, cramped, all watching a very large television broadcast the five o’clock local news. He still stood motionless at the front door, uncomfortably unaware of when and how to make his entrance. People had come from all corners of the country to sit with this loving, beautiful family during the mourning period of the death of their amazing thirteen-year-old child. Grandma sat waiting for the news to talk about her grandchild. The cousins played in the kitchen eating biscuits from Popeyes. The church ladies came with pizzas. The seven-year-old younger brother escaped from all of it, hanging out with a friend downstairs playing video games. Finally, the front door opened and the visitor, no older than twelve or thirteen, had entered the home, accompanied by his mother who stood by his side. His hands shook, his eyes were glazed over by tears, his face was wet from the tears that had already left his eyes, his mouth gripped tight…and he stood facing the family holding a blue envelope with “Dear Mrs. Hood” scribbled in his best cursive on the front. Unable to speak, his loving mother spoke on his behalf, addressing her counterpart, the mother of the young man whose life was taken from him just four days prior. “He was a classmate of Kevins’ and wanted to come by and give you a card he made.” She stood up off the couch she had been sitting on for the past three hours and approached this young man with tenderness only a mother knows how to give. As she held him in her arms, he cried like men should cry, when they lose a brother. His mother just watched, peacefully.

I had arrived in Queens yesterday because of the tears of a grown man. It was late Sunday night and I received a call from Russell (Simmons). Now, this wouldn’t be out of the ordinary, as Russell calls me at all times of the day. But, what was unusual was that it was his birthday and I knew he was going out to dinner, so why was he calling me? When I answered the phone, he spoke in a tone I have never heard from him before. He was in tears. His core had been shook. He had just gotten off the phone with Donna Hood Greaves, the mother of Kevin Miller, the thirteen year old who had been shot in the back of the head, from a stray bullet a block away, not meant for him. An innocent, honor roll student who was walking with his friends to McDonald’s after school on a Friday afternoon, when his life ended in a split second. Russell was moved by the mother’s words, expressing the love for her child and the humility to not judge the alleged sixteen-year-old shooter. All she wanted was for her son not to die in vain…that people would remember her son, and that he would not become just a statistic.  Since he was in Miami, he asked me to pay a visit to the family and offer his personal condolences.

As I sat with Donna and her family yesterday, I wanted to make sure that she had the chance to share with the world her ever-lasting love for her child. And I also wanted to make sure that the world remembers his name. Kevin Miller.

-Michael Skolnik
political editor for

Follow Michael on Twitter @michaelskolnik

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