WASHINGTON - A D.C. community angered by an uptick in crime came together in support of a 13-year-old girl who is recovering from being shot last month.
Songs and prayers were the soundtrack at a vigil for Taije Chambliss. The 13-year-old was shot while playing with a friend in the front steps of her neighbor’s Southwest D.C. home after she finished her homework at the library.
At Christ United Methodist Church, the vigil was anything but normal.
"It's a vigil about a shooting that didn't result in death,” a speaker said.
But Chambliss will have to live with a bullet lodged in her leg. And for now, the constant care of three open gunshot wounds.
Her mother, Lakesha, said she is "just trying to get Taije back to normalcy.”
It was a difficult task for Taije on Tuesday as she had to leave school early on her first day back following the shooting. Her wounds were too bloody to stay in class.
“Thank you to everybody who came out to pray for me,” Taije told the crowd at the church.
She tried thanking the community, but quickly sought the comfort of her mother as memory of the shooting appeared to be still too fresh for her.
The Southwest D.C. community here stood by the 13-year-old’s side as they lit candles and possibly one day forgive the person who pulled the trigger.
“You might want to think before you take those actions,” said Lakesha Chambliss. “You could have took my baby away from me. She has her whole life ahead of her. You’re probably a father, have sisters or young children, your family -- you should think about turning yourself in.”
There was a representative from Mayor Muriel Bowser’s office at the vigil. Taije’s mother said that several of her representatives have stopped by at different occasions at her home.
She is hoping that something will materialize from those meetings because she said that the shooting that nearly killed her daughter need to end in the District.