Today my friend James Lilly died from a self-inflicted bullet wound. He was a former Chicago gang member, paralyzed when he was 15 years old from a rival gang bullet. Still, he emerged over the years as a champion wheelchair racer who also spoke to kids in schools about not joining gangs. We spoke at events together and took part in conferences and circles on ending gang violence. He sought me as a mentor, and in the end we became friends. You can find out more about his championship run at http://pushin-forward.net/ I have much love for this brother, who emerged as a hero in my eyes. Like many traumatized young men, he also had much to wrestle with. I send love, prayers, and good thoughts to James, his oldest son Jimmy, his wife Nora, and their children. I also send prayers and much respect to Izumi Tanaka, who made the film on James’ life and stayed close to him and his family. For now, I am deeply saddened. Que en paz descanse. c/s
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