Family of murdered toddler celebrate her life with balloon release
BATON ROUGE - On Wednesday, more than 100 people gathered to celebrate the life of Ja'tyri (JT) Brown with a balloon release outside the apartment complex where she lost her life.
It was a family coming together again, praying but this time holding and releasing pink and white balloons for a life that was taken from them too soon.
"We will not let them forget Ja'tyri Brown’s name. In other states there are other kids getting murdered just like my grandbaby,” said her grandmother Hope Provost.
Ja'tyri Brown, who would have turned 2 in August, was killed May 31 while she was playing near the pool of the Fairway View Apartments on College Drive. The shooting also left two men dead.
Brown was an innocent bystander – shot by a stray bullet when selfish gunmen wildly opened fire hitting Brown, the two others and vehicles parked in the complex parking lot. The family tells WBRZ, that they have no connection to either the suspects or the other victims.
In the last 24 hours, BRPD reports three suspects are in custody while three more are at large. JT's grandfather says that the arrests mean progress is being made, but it’s just a rock off of a boulder, there's so much more ahead.
"That gives us a little relief, that they are off the street that they can't do it to anyone else, but on the same token that's their job we need to expect them to do their job,” said George Provost.
Her family was also not satisfied with the charges or the bonds for those suspects, requesting the maximum sentence.
"We are not accepting any pleas. We don't want to hear I'm sorry. We don't want to hear any of that, because it won't bring Ja’tyri back,” said Hope.
"Everyone that had anything to do with this needs to be dealt with. They need to be dealt with accordingly,” said JT’s uncle Jeorick Provost.
JT's family is hurting but they're still holding strong to those around them. They remind the community that this is just the beginning.
"We are going to need this and a lot more. We need people to stand up. Parents even though you want to be oblivious to it, you know what your kids are doing. So let's get in here and let's save some of them,” said George.
As they will continue to live on lifting up their baby girl’s name.
"Mee Maw is going to love you always. I'm going to miss you baby girl and I'll carry you everywhere I go,” said Hope as they released those pink and white balloons shouting, “Forever Ja’tyri,” and “We love you.”
Once those balloons were released some got caught in the transformers and popped. The family cried and laughed, saying their baby girl made sure they knew she was there.
The family also plans to hold a funeral this Saturday at Mary Baptist Church for JT. It will begin at 10 a.m. There will also be a viewing Friday at Mary Baptist Church Friday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.