Toone community prays for unity after double homicide

Screen Shot 2016-10-22 at 9.23.43 PMTOONE, Tenn. — Just one day after a father and his young son are gunned down in their own home in Toone; Saturday afternoon residents came together not only for fellowship but to stand with the Robertson family.

Dozens gathered to remember 13-year-old “JoJo” and his father “Joe Duke.”

“We wanted to do some fellowship for our community,” Toone resident Junior Jimmerson said. “In light of the tragedy that we’ve had in the community we think it was a perfect time to have it.”

Though planned months ago, Saturday’s free cookout to promote unity couldn’t have come at a batter time for the community.

“Could not be any better for our community right now with events that’s happened this week,” Hardeman County Mayor Jimmy Sain.

Close friends of the Robertson family say they were brought to tears learning that their classmate was killed.

“It hurt me when I found out that may best friend just died, he was only 13,” JoJo’s best friend said. “Now he ain’t going to be able to graduate with us. And then he didn’t get to play basketball like he said he was going to do.”

Screen Shot 2016-10-22 at 9.24.24 PM“I had to call my mama to come pick me up. I couldn’t handle it,” JoJo’s cousin Rodrickus Brown said.

Everyone took a break from the dance floor to pray for community healing.

“I want everybody to keep the Robertson family in prayer,” event organizer Baron Jimmerson said. “I don’t know if any of them are here today but I hope they are. We are going to release some balloons for the Robertson family, Joe Duke and little JoJo. Ain’t nothing we can do about that, all we can do about it is pray.”

Although most say they are still in shock, they’re happy the community is supportive.

“We love the 38381,” Toone resident Dagen Hudson said. “I don’t want to see anyone lose their life. But we just have to keep them uplifted and know that God has a plan for everything.”

“Just sad that like it happened,” Brown said. “I still don’t kind of believe it, but I got to.”

A source close to the incident says the Hardeman County Sheriff has two men in custody related to Friday’s double homicide. Right now it’s unclear if formal charges have been filed.

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