Remembering DeAunta Farrow

Published: Jun. 23, 2008 at 2:02 AM CDT|Updated: Jun. 23, 2008 at 2:51 AM CDT
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Dozens gathered in West Memphis Sunday evening for a candlelight vigil to remember young DeAunta Farrow, the 12-year-old boy who was shot and killed by a West Memphis Police Officer exactly one year ago to the day.

The vigil took place on Goodwin Avenue, where the boy was shot.

Organizers say Sunday's vigil served to unite the community as they continue to fight for justice.

Farrow was shot and killed last June by West Memphis Police Officer Erik Sammis. The officer says Farrow was holding a toy gun that Sammis thought was real.
Relatives contend the boy was actually holding a bag of chips and a soda, and the toy gun was planted as a cover-up.

"I know it was a cover-up, I know the toy gun was planted," said Farrow's mother Deborah.

The National Action Network called the shooting racist.
Special Prosecutors decided Officer Sammis should not face charges in the shooting death of Farrow. State and federal justice departments also cleared Sammis of any wrongdoing.
But Sunday's vigil for Farrow wasn't about rehashing evidence. It was about honoring the memory of a beloved child.
"We'd always sit back and laugh at him because he had a great sense of humor," said Deborah Farrow.
DeAunta's mother says there is still not a day that goes by when she doesn't think of her son.

"I never, never forget about him," said Farrow.
DeAunta's family, friends and neighbors gathered together to share stories and sing songs.

"He was my best friend, someone who's there for you until the end. We used to play together, we used to ride our bikes," said Kevin Bates, Jr., who wrote a song in memory of his friend.

"Why do we have to die so young? Why do we have to die so young?," Bates sang.

DeAunta Farrow's family and friends are still searching for answers.

Click here to e-mail Lori Brown.