Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil. Proverbs 4. 27
Tavoris was the cutest little boy, and I loved working with him. He came to the after school program Sue Carmichael and I ran at St. Mary's in Springfield. He had an older brother and there were lots of other equally adorable children, but Tavoris and I had a special bond. Maybe it was because he had a sparkle in his eyes that said I like you, I want to learn, thank you for helping me. We colored together, we sang, we even built a birdhouse. My son Marcus and some of his friends came down to help on a regular basis, and they too had special friends among the kids. But Tavoris was my little buddy.
I drifted away from my ministry downtown and relocated in Orange Park to put a church back together. But I thought often of Tavoris and asked regularly how he was. One day Sue told me she hadn't seen him for a while, and she said she had heard things weren't going well with his family. The next time I asked, Tavoris was running with a bad group and getting in trouble. About then I started watching the paper to see if he had gotten in trouble.
And then this in the paper today...
Family members identified the victim as Tavoris Oliver, 25. Although relatives were not ready to speak on camera, they told News4Jax Tavoris was kind, loving, sweet, respectful and funny. His mother on Monday released the following statement:“We are saddened by the death of Tavoris Oliver. Tavoris was known as a loving, caring, and fun spirited individual. Tavoris always worked to keep others smiling. This is a tragic time for me and my family. If anyone has any information, please contact law enforcement and help my family get justice.”
Tavoris is the one on the left. Rest In Peace, Tavoris. I wish I could have helped you more.