The Daily Grind Video

I visited the Wild 100s yesterday, ak.a. The Altgeld Gardens, one of Chicago’s roughest housing project on the city’s far south side. I went in to talk with Sherry Smith, mother of Eugene Riley, who’s being held without bond for the murder of Derrion Albert. 

They’re in court this morning. I also had an meeting with Noonie Ward, who grew up in The Gardens, and is also a former ‘Chief’ or high ranking official of the Chicago Street Organization known as the ‘Gangsta Disciples’ or ‘GDs’. Noonie was also second in command to Larry Hoover here in the Chi; now has turned his life around and is working to help stop the violence of today’s Chicago youth.

Noonie led a group of residents, activists and leaders into a closed door meeting with Mayor Richard M. Daley, Chicago Public School officials, Chicago Housing Authority, and other city officials on Monday. Their issue and main concern is a ‘Safe Passage’ for the kids of The Gardens, who are being bused outside of their community to attend school at Fenger when there’s an academy (Carver Military Academy) within walking distance from their home.

Apparently the idea to transfer Altgeld Garden students from Carver over to Roseland/Fenger happened nearly 3-4 years ago.; however, the ‘known’ territorial beef between Roseland and The Gardens has been going on for over 20years; according to Noonie.

During the interview with Noonie, yesterday around 2pm, someone yelled from around the corner, ‘a fight broke out at Fenger, they got the students locked down inside the school.’ We dropped everything and jumped into our cars.. passed Carver in 2 minutes, but it took us at least 15-20minutes by car to get to Fenger. Fenger students that live in the Gardens have to take 2 public buses and walk 5 blocks to get to Fenger. They have to leave home 2 hours early to make it school. 

Here’s what happened when we arrived:

Five Fenger students were arrested yesterday, four charged with reckless conduct and one with aggravated assault. Meanwhile, another Chicago Public School student was shot to death yesterday afternoon in the Back of The Yards, neighborhood. And the three boys accused of Derrion’s murder are back in court today. 

Chicago Is Under Siege! It’s one thing to read and blog, and another thing to be on the ground while it’s happening. I saw ki