Shooting victim's mother: Weeping 'not going to make it better'

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by TONYA MOSLEY and TRAVIS PITTMAN / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on June 2, 2012 at 12:51 PM

Updated Sunday, Jun 3 at 4:50 PM

SEATTLE – Two communities gathered Saturday to honor four people fatally shot at Café Racer last Wednesday.

About 50 people attended a prayer vigil Saturday afternoon at the cafe where Ian Stawicki shot five people. Joe Albanese, Drew Keriakedes, Kimberly Layfield and Donald Largen were killed. Leonard Meuse was listed in serious condition at Harborview Medical Center Friday.

Police say Stawicki also shot and killed Gloria Leonidas at 8th Avenue and Seneca Street in downtown Seattle. Stawicki eventually shot and killed himself in West Seattle as police approached him.

"Weeping and wailing is not going to make it go away," said Betty Parker, Largen's mother. "It's not going to make it better. My son was a happy and loving person and I’m honoring that today.”

Parker was joined by a contingent of African-American leaders who drove in from the south end of town to show their support for the north end community.

"When a life is lost, it's not a black thing, it's not a white thing. It's a human thing," said Pastor Greg Banks. "This could have been any one of us, sitting in a café, having a cup of coffee."

The Ravenna coffee shop is still closed, the front entrance blocked by rows of flowers, cards and pictures of the victims. Café owner Kurt Geissel says the shop will open one day soon, but for now it stands a place of healing and remembering those who were lost.

An Interfaith Prayer for Healing is scheduled for 6 p.m. Sunday at St. Mark's Cathedral in Seattle. At the conclusion, there will be a procession to St. James Cathedral for another service which will conclude shortly before 8 p.m.

A benefit concert for the victims' families will be held Sunday at 8 p.m. in the alley behind the cafe.

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