Family remembers blind, disabled man shot and killed near park he visited every day

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CHICAGO -- A neighborhood came together on the far South Side Sunday to remember a young man killed on Memorial Day in the Longwood Manor neighborhood.

Jervon Morris was blind and developmentally disabled, but the 20-year-old still volunteered at his neighborhood park. His sister Tiffany Morris says even though Jervon saw only dark shadows, he managed to brighten his little corner of the world in Euclid Park.

“You could have the world on your shoulder and Jo would walk up and your attitude would just change, his aura was something special,” Tiffany said.

Edna Young was Morris’s aunt but was like a mother to him, raising him since he was 11 months old.

“I taught him to cross the street early because I didn’t want him to be confined to the house, so I taught him to come to the park every day,” Young said.

And that’s what he did every day: volunteered with the Chicago Park District and played basketball in the park.

But then on Memorial Day as Jervon was visiting that very same park someone inexplicably opened fire and he was struck in the head. In a city that sees almost daily gun violence, the shooting stands out as particularly appalling.

“He didn’t really know what to do if he heard gun shots and he probably couldn’t tell where they were coming from and everything like that, his first instinct was just to get home,” Tiffany said.

As police search for answers, his family is left with nothing but questions. They said they hope his killing serves as a sort of tipping point that may help reverse the wave of violent crime in Chicago.

On Sunday, the neighborhood gathered for a cookout and a day of games at Euclid Park to honor Jervon's memory.

"We have so many good memories of him, no one can really say, I really didn’t like Jo, or Jo did this to me," Tiffany said.

Funeral services will be held for Morris on Thursday.

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