Faye Alexander lost her son to gun violence

Faye Alexander’s son, Qucell Walker, was shot returning to a hotel on Eisenhower Parkway in 1994. Her was just months away from turning 21.

When Alexander returned from work, messages on her answering machine alerted her of his death.

“My father answered the phone,”said Alexander, “and all I asked him was, “My child dead?”

Her family had been waiting to give her the news when someone was home with her.

“My heart was hurting, I was full of pain, I was full of anger on who could do this to my child. He didn’t bother no one,” Alexander said.

Police never solved Walker’s murder. Alexander believes her son’s death was an attempted robbery.

“The police here in Macon back then, they wasn’t no help,” Alexander said. “I felt no one wanted to help me. I felt like killing myself, and I won’t lie to you about that.”

Alexander’s son died the day before her mother’s birthday. Her sister was murdered two months before Walker’s death.

“I had a speech set for her [mother],” said Alexander, “to let her know that if I could be half the woman that she were, I would really be something. You have lost your child, I don’t know what that’s like, I lost my sister. And then here it is, I lost my child. So I knew exactly what she felt.”

Alexander is the director of Peacekeepers Healing of Affliction, an organization fighting to end community violence, and runs a group for mothers who have lost children to violence. She aims to show the unknown consequences of youth turning to violence.

“They’re looking at a fast way out, they’re looking at this fast money, they’re looking at this gangster life,” said Alexander. “But all that gets you is your life being, you know, you going to prison. And that’s your life right there.”

She says losing a child has ongoing effects.

“You don’t just lose a child to gun violence, you got to deal with those siblings, the family,” Alexander explained. “His nieces never seen their uncle, they just know of him, and he would have loved those girls. So he’s missed out on that, even they have missed out on their uncle.”

Despite contemplating suicide after her son’s death, Alexander devoted her work to ending youth violence.

“I got to live. I got work out here to do,” Alexander said.

The group of mothers who have lost children to violence plan to walk in this year’s Christmas parade.

“You see beauty queens, you see clowns, you see these old cars riding in the parade, now y’all are gonna get ready to see us in the parade. On a float, representing something that is really special to our hearts which is, ‘Put down the guns.’”